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Barcelona 5-1 Ath Bilbao

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Messi: Bagged yet another brace

Messi: Bagged yet another brace

Barcelona continued their unbeaten start to the La Liga campaign with a superb 5-1 home win over Athletic Bilbao on Saturday night.

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For much of the last 18 months, the Basques have looked like the only team capable of challenging Barca in an out-and-out footballing clash but after a difficult start to the campaign, they once again fell short in the Nou Camp.

The match began in frantic fashion, with both teams trying to assert themselves on proceedings, but Barcelona soon took control and eventually went ahead when Gerard Pique bundled home on 23 minutes.

The goal visibly deflated Bilbao and the disappointment was compounded when Lionel Messi netted two minutes later before Adriano scored on the stroke of half-time to send his team in 3-0 up.

The break didn't halt the Blaugrana's progress in the second stanza and after spurning a host of chances, Cesc Fabregas popped up to grab his sixth goal of the campaign.

Despite the deficit, Bilbao continued to push and their persistence eventually paid off, when Ibai Gomez grabbed a consolation with a left footed strike from inside the area.

However, Barcelona weren't done and it was left to Messi to complete the scoring in the 70th minute, as his sweetly struck effort found the roof of the net to make the score 5-0.

The result means Tito Vilanova's men have now won 13 out of their 14 La Liga matches, while in contrast, the Basques still have plenty to do if they're to emulate last season's achievements.

Posted: 01/12/12 20:58

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