Live From Nou Camp:  BARCELONA 5-1 GIRONA- It's Lionel Messi

Live From Nou Camp:  BARCELONA 5-1 GIRONA- It's Lionel Messi

24 February 2018 Saturday 23:21
Live From Nou Camp:  BARCELONA 5-1 GIRONA- It's Lionel Messi

Live commentary

Follow live updates and watch in-game clips as La Liga leaders Barcelona host Girona. 

GOAL! BARCELONA 5-1 GIRONA (Coutinho, 66)

What a brilliant goal from Philippe Coutinho. Barcelona aren't in a rush for this fifth goal but then the Brazilian brings the Nou Camp to its feet with a sensational strike with his right boot. 

He's done it countless times down the years in the red of Liverpoool, cutting in from the left, but it doesn't get any less sublime.

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2 - Philippe Coutinho’s first goal for Barcelona was assisted by Luis Suarez (vs Valencia in Copa del Rey) and Philippe Coutinho’s first assist was scored by Luis Suarez (vs Girona in La Liga). Connection.

11:49 PM - Feb 24, 2018

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47: Slow start to this second period as both sides give the ball away rather cheaply before Messi and Dembele look to carve out another chance. 

It's an excellent pass by Dembele into Semedo but Suarez is caught on his heels.



46: SUB! Aday Benitez makes way for former Barcelona B team player Carles Planas.

We're back up and running.



Check out the Sky Bet Price Boosts available at half-time, including Ousmane Dembele to score in this match at odds enhanced from 2/1 to 9/4!


No additional time at the end of this half as Rojas blows his whistle. 

Barcelona have come firing back from that early Portu opener with Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi both helping themselves to two goals. They're going 10 points clear at the top of La Liga.


It's becoming a procession for Barcelona as unselfish play from Phuilippe Coutinho sets up Luis Suarez for a simple finish. That's his 19th league goal of the season. 

Not sure why Bernardo came rushing out from his defensive position but Barcelona are out of sight

Barcelona have breathing space. It's the perfect distance for a free-kick to go underneath the wall, and that's precisely what Lionel Messi does, as the wall jumps and the Argentine firmly passes the ball into the net past Bounou. 

Another brilliant Messi strike. His 371st La Liga goal. Remarkable.


Luis Suarez receives Ivan Rakitic's long pass, and the Uruguayan sets up his strike partner Lionel Messi for his customary goal from 12 yards. 

It looked as though the chance was lost as he took a few touches, but he knew exactly what he was doing as he flashed his shot beyond Bounou via the 'keeper's outstretched right hand.

28: OVER! Dembele finds himself with a little bit of room after good defensive work from Semedo in hounding out Garcia and the winger sets up Messi but his fierce left-footed shot is always rising.

25: SAVE! Suarez stings the hands of Bounou with his shot from the right from Semedo's pass. Barcelona are just starting to turn the screw against this brave Girona side on their first visit to the Nou Camp in an official competitive match.

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20: OVER! Dembele makes a run from his wide right position but he fires his shot miles over the bar. 

19: WHAT A CLEARANCE! Great defending on the line from Bernardo as he heads Lionel Messi's lob over the crossbar. 

It was brilliant football all round as Suarez got his head up and knew exactly what he wanted to do as he found Messi but Bernardo didn't give it up and skilfully headed over the bar from point-blank range.

16: Barcelona have held onto the ball as they patiently seek to complete a first-half turnaround. Dembele has looked a threat down the right but so far his final ball has deserted him as Semedo is penalised for a foul on Lozano.




12: CHANCE! Benitez gives the ball straight to Messi, which isn't a great idea. 

The Argentine wizard flicks the ball over the Girona defence into the path of Alba who seeks Suarez with his chest but Bounou gets down to intercept and smother the ball.


11: SAVE! Messi steps up and tries his luck, reversing his left-footed shot but Bounou does well to tip the effort around the post.

10: Great play from Messi to draw the foul from Jonas Ramalho to earn his side a free-kick in a dangerous position, 25 yards out slightly to the left of the penalty box.

8: OVER! Girona will look to attack on this big occasion for the club and Lozano is next to let fly from out wide on the left but this time he doesn't test Ter Stegen.


Great response from Barcelona. 

It's an intelligent pass from Sergio Busquets into Messi, who in turn releases Luis Suarez and the Uruguayan striker gets his side back on level terms with a composed finish at Yassine Bounou's near post. What a start to this game!

What a start by Girona as Samuel Umtiti fails to deal with a run from the left by Lozano, and the ball breaks free for Portu to score from an acute angle with Ter Stegen out of his goal. 

Busquets lost the ball high up the pitch. What a shock at the Nou Camp


2: Barcelona start on the front foot as Semedo gets free down the right but Girona clear their lines.


A nice moment in the tunnel as Girona boss Pablo Machín shakes hands with Ernesto Valverde. 

Sergi Roberto, Andres Iniesta and Paulinho are dropped to the bench but there's no rest for Messi, Suarez and many others who played in that game with Chelsea.

Alberola Rojas is the referee for tonight's match and he signals both sides to come together to pay tribute to the Bilbao policeman Inocencio Alonso García who lost his life during the disturbances prior to Athletic's match with Spartak Moscow on Thursday night.

We're just about all set at the Nou Camp with the Girona players in their traditional red and white shirts awaiting their opponents in the tunnel. 

Barcelona won the reverse fixture 3-0 but they drew 0-0 against Getafe in their last home league match.


We're 15 minutes away from kick-off and there's a carnival atmosphere outside the ground ahead of this Catalan derby...

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  • Girona have conceded a league-high 20% of their goals in the first 15 minutes this season (6/30).
  • Of the current La Liga teams, Girona are the only team Lionel Messi is yet to score against.
  • Luis Suárez (five), Lionel Messi (three) and Paulinho (three) have scored Barcelona’s last 11 league goals at Camp Nou.
  • Álex Granell provided two assists in his last appearance in La Liga against Leganes; becoming the first Girona player to do so in the top-flight.
  • Stuani has now scored 13 La Liga goals this term; the most he has ever recorded in a single La Liga season.

Here's a look at the table and the form guide ahead of tonight's match. Seven points clear at the top of the table, Barcelona could set a new club record of 32 Liga games without defeat.

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Girona join Barcelona in making three changes from their last outing. 

Pere PonsPablo Maffeo and Anthony Lozano replace Cristhian Stuani, Aleix Garcia and John Mojica in the starting line-up from the side that beat Leganes 3-0 last time out.


Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde suggested he would make changes but all the big guns are handed starts.

Sergi Roberto is replaced by Nelson Semedo, who returns at right-back from suspension.

Paulinho and Andres Iniesta are replaced by Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele in the two other changes to the side that drew 1-1 at Chelsea in midweek.


Starting XI: Bono, Ramalho, Bernardo, Juanpe, Maffeo, Aday, Pere Pons, Granell, Borja Garcia, Portu, Lozano.

Subs: Gorka, Stuani, Douglas Luiz, Timor, Muniesa, Planas, Aleix Garcia.


Starting XI: Ter Stegen, Semedo, Pique, Umtiti, Alba, Rakitic, Busquets, Coutinho, Dembele, Suarez, Messi.

Subs: Cillessen, Iniesta, Paulinho, Digne, Roberto, Vidal, Vermaelen.

Check out the Sky Bet Price Boosts available ahead of kick-off, including Lionel Messi to score a hat-trick at odds enhanced from 13/2 to 17/2!

Hello and welcome along to live minute-by-minute commentary of Barcelona's home game against Girona in La Liga. 

Real Madrid closed the gap to 11 points earlier today by beating Alaves 4-0 but Ernesto Valverde's side will be confident his side can open up a 10-point gap on second-placed Atletico Madrid.

Team news will be with you shortly...

Updated: 25.02.2018 00:15
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