This Saturday, Barcelona faced Mallorca, for matchday 28 of La Liga. At a behind-closed-doors Iberostar Stadium, the hosts didn’t stand a chance and saw the visitors, run by Argentine maestro Lionel Messi, win by 4-0. Arturo Vidal, Martin Braithwaite, Jordi Alba, and Messi himself scored the goals of the match.
Many were questioning whether Barcelona would still maintain their tempo after the long stoppage and the answer was given at the beginning of the match. With 2 minutes on the clock, Vidal broke the deadlock after receiving a cross from Alba, already putting Barcelona ahead.
With the early lead, it was obvious that the Catalan team would be intense and control the match, even though they weren’t able to double the scoring in the first minutes.
It took Mallorca until the middle of the first half to start finding spaces and they could have found the equalizer with Take Kubo’s shot if it wasn’t for Ter Stegen’s great save.
Despite the hosts being in their best moments, the visitors were the ones to find the back of the net once again. At the 37th minute, Messi’s header was an assist to Braithwaite, who scored his first goal for the Catalan club.
The home side had another good opportunity to score at the beginning of the second half, with their top scorer Ante Budimir. However, the number 22 missed the chance.
Barcelona took control of the match once again and, because of that, manager Quique Setien decided to make some changes. First, he put Luis Suarez at the place of Antoine Griezmann. It was the Uruguayan’s return after five months away due to knee surgery. And, later, Arthur took the place of Sergio Busquets.
It was effective. At the 79th minute, Arthur started a play that ended up on Jordi Alba scoring Barca’s third goal. Then, already at the injury time, at 90+3, Suarez assisted Messi, who finally scored his goal and gave final numbers to the match.
With the victory, Barcelona went to 61 points, remaining in the first place, two points ahead of Real Madrid. Meanwhile, Mallorca keeps fighting against relegation, with the same 25 points, and in 18th place.