No Messi, no drawback as Barcelona take ‘leap into unknown’ with victory


Barcelona began life with out Lionel Messi by defeating Actual Sociedad 4-2 of their La Liga opener on the Camp Nou on Sunday even when followers admitted it felt like “a leap into the unknown”.

Captain Gerard Pique gave them a nineteenth minute lead along with his fiftieth objective for the membership.

Martin Braithwaite discovered the web in first half harm time and within the 59th minute. Sergi Roberto added a fourth within the final minute of the sport.

Simply over 20,000 followers had been in attendance as crowds returned for the primary time for the reason that pandemic.

Nonetheless, they needed to maintain their breath at one stage when Sociedad got here again from 3-0 all the way down to get to 3-2 because of targets from 20-year-old Julen Lobete within the 82nd minute and a 30-metre free-kick from skipper Mikel Oyarzabal three minutes later.

Six-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi referred to as time on his two-decade profession at Barcelona final week and moved to Paris Saint-Germain.

Messi’s reminiscence lingered heavy over the Camp Nou on Sunday regardless of the removing of a large {photograph} of the Argentine celebrity from the doorway within the wake of his transfer to France.

Some banners had been in place effectively earlier than kick-off venting the followers anger in direction of president Joan Laporta.

One learn “Laporta, Barca just isn’t your small business”, whereas one other proclaimed “Barca sure, Laporta no!”

“It was a giant emotional blow,” stated 23-year-old Barca fan Adria De Lucas.

“I used to be in my room after I noticed the information. I began sending messages to all my buddies, and nobody believed it. It was emotionally laborious.”

The supporter added: “It is a leap into the unknown (with out Messi). We’ll see what occurs.”

Contained in the Camp Nou, followers made probably the most of their return after 18 months, chanting “Messi! Messi!”.

Banners expressed their “everlasting gratitude”.

“The supporters are with us, they wish to see soccer,” stated Pique.

“We knew they had been going to react that means. Everyone knows what Leo represents, however every little thing modifications and we have now to maintain going.

– ‘Haven’t got Messi expertise’ –

“We shall be very aggressive and we are going to battle for titles to the tip. We won’t have his expertise, however we have now confirmed that we are able to all play collectively.”

La Liga champions Atletico Madrid bought their season underway with a 2-1 win at Celta Vigo.

Angel Correa gave Atletico the lead after 23 minutes after being arrange by Thomas Lemar.

Correa added a second objective within the sixty fourth minute simply 5 minutes after Iago Aspas had pulled Celta degree from the penalty spot.

Nonetheless, the sport was marred by a mass brawl within the closing phases following a foul on Atletico striker Luis Suarez.

Purple playing cards had been brandished for Hugo Mallo of Celta and Mario Hermoso of Atletico.

In Sunday’s late sport, Sevilla defeated Rayo Vallecano 3-0 with Moroccan worldwide Youssef En-Nesyri scoring a first-half penalty earlier than new Argentine recruit Erik Lamela grabbed two.

Vallecano performed 75 minutes a person quick after goalkeeper Luca Zidane, the son of French soccer legend Zinedine, was red-carded for bringing down Oussama Idrissi within the transfer which led to the penalty.

As Barca attempt to fill the Messi-sized hole, in addition to ballooning money owed of greater than 1.2 billion euros ($1.6 billion), Actual Madrid bought off to a flier on the pitch as a brace from French veteran striker Karim Benzema helped deliver a 4-1 victory at Alaves on Saturday.

The win, achieved with additional targets from Nacho and Vinicius allowed Carlo Ancelotti to have a good time the beginning of his second spell in cost with a victory.

A Joselu penalty for the hosts was a minor blemish after Actual keeper Thibaut Courtois, making his one centesimal Liga look for Actual, introduced down John Guidetti.

In different motion on Saturday, Cadiz and Levante parted 1-1 as did Mallorca and Actual Betis whereas the match between Osasuna and Espanyol led to a goalless stalemate.

There are two matches on Monday as Villarreal go up in opposition to Granada whereas Elche meet Athletic Bilbao.

Valencia bought the ball rolling Friday and pocketed three factors after an early Carlos Soler penalty was sufficient to see them overcome Getafe 1-0.




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