Barca Star Reveals On He Enjoys Playing Alongside Messi

Lionel Messi fires home the opener

Two minutes later the same combination linked up again as Messi poked home another Alba cross.

Barca are nine points ahead of nearest challengers Atletico Madrid and 17 clear of champions Real Madrid, who will visit Celta Vigo later on Sunday.

Earlier in the day, Espanyol overturned a 1-2 first leg deficit against Levante to qualify 3-2 on aggregate thanks to a 2-0 win away at Ciudad de Valencia Stadium. Already it was looking like a massive ask for Celta, who were being torn about by a vintage Barcelona display. "Messi? He's fine, we were on top and there's an important match on Sunday".

Suarez netted in the 31st after pouncing on a poor pass by Pione Sisto, before Rakitic nodded home at the end.

There will also be a Catalan derby in the last eight with Barcelona being drawn against Espanyol.

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As Ousmane Dembele made his first league start in more than three months, due to hamstrong injury, Barcelona put up a routine win but in an underwhelming manner.

The main entertainment in the second half came from Dembele late on, who produced some wonderful pieces of skill to get the supporters on their feet.

In team news, new Barca signing Philippe Coutinho won't be making his debut just yet due to an injury, but the star trio of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, and Andres Iniesta, who all missed the first leg, are included in the squad.

Suarez nearly capped the win with a spectacular chip from 40 yards, with the ball just sailing wide of the left-hand post, but Rakitic added gloss to the scoreline three minutes from time with a firm header from Dembele's corner. And if Messi continues to perform to such high standards, it's hard to see any side halting the Blaugrana in any competition.

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