Champions League: Lionel Messi double inspires Barcelona to 4-2 win against Tottenham
Lionel Messi scored twice as Barcelona hammered four past Tottenham, to bring up a 4-2 victory in the Champions League Group B match at the Wembley Stadium on Wednesday.
Philippe Coutinho gave visitors the lead inside just two minutes after Hugo Lloris was caught short in trying to chase down a Messi through ball to Jordi Alba, whose back pass opened up a lot of space for the Brazilian to score.
The visitors were completely dominant as Tottenham found themselves chasing the ball at most times and relied on hefty fouls to bail out. Chances came flowing in numbers for Barcelona, but it was once again a back pass that put Barca two ahead before the half-hour mark. Coutinho chased a long ball from Messi, before playing it back to the field from which Ivan Rakitic side-volleyed home with a gorgeous shot in the 28th minute.
Messi then nearly put the game away twice at the start of the second half, but both the time his shot came off the left post as Spur survived a humiliation. The home team minutes later pulled one back with Hary Kane picking up an Erik Lamela pass inside the penalty box before cutting the ball back to his right foot and firing it past a hapless Marc-Andre ter Stegen to make it 2-1.
But their celebrations will be short-lived as Barcelona replied with a goal in the next four minutes through skipper Messi. Once again it was a cut-back from Jordi Alba that Luiz Suarez let go before the Argentine genius smashed it through the same post from which the ball has ricocheted off twice.
Tottenham will have a second in the 66th minute after Kane chased a loose ball, won it and fed Lamela, whose left-footed curler took a big deflection off Clement Lenglet and sailed over a diving Ter Stegen to reduce to deficit to just one goal at 1-3.
They nearly had another when Lucas Moura broke free in the 84th minute with some brilliant skills but only to see his shot take a wicked deflection of Lenglet and go out of play.
Bur as Spurs pushed more men upfront in search of the equaliser, Messi put the game to rest in the final minute after Jordi Alba’s pass- having won the ball off Moussa Sissoko – was once again let go by Suarez for his captain from which Messi struck home to complete the 4-2 beating of Tottenham.