Lionel Messi shined his on the pitch once again, starring in Barcelona’s comprehensive 5-2 win over Getafe on Thursday.

Barcelona maintained pressure on arch-rivals Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid in La Liga title race, with a thumping 5-2 win over Getafe on Thursday. Although they did not gain anything from the three points, it will help them keep up with the league leaders, especially ahead of a real six-pointer against Atletico coming up.

It was a blistering start to the game for Barcelona, who found the breakthrough inside the first eight minutes, thanks to an exquisite pass from Sergio Busquets that found Lionel Messi clean through on goal. However, Getafe got lucky to equalise through an own goal from Clement Lenglet moments later, before the Azulones themselves scored an own goal to gift Barcelona their one-goal cushion.

There was still time for another goal in the first half, as Messi scored again in the 33rd minute. It meant the Catalans went into half-time with a 3-1 lead, but the game was far from over as Getafe pulled one back by winning a penalty midway through the second half. Enes Unal made no mistake in converting the spot-kick, sparking real hopes of a comeback from the away side.

However, they could never really make inroads and were duly punished as Ronald Araujo scored Barcelona’s fourth goal of the night before Antoine Griezmann added the final gloss to the scoreline in the dying embers of the game, through a penalty that was won by Frenkie de Jong. Here, at The Hard Tackle, we will run the rule over the Barcelona players in their comprehensive win over Getafe this midweek.

Marc-Andre ter Stegen: 6/10

Marc-Andre ter Stegen was extremely unlucky to concede the first goal and even the second, as it was scored via a penalty, which happened to be Getafe’s only shot on target in the entire game. The Barcelona goalkeeper, therefore, did not have too much on his plate, though he did have to remain vigilant throughout the course of the game.

Oscar Mingueza: 6/10

It was an awkward game for Oscar Mingueza, who did well to keep things tidy at the back. However, he did march forward more often than usual, especially in the second half, even though Barcelona were leading only by one goal. As a result, he copped a lot of flak from Ronald Koeman and was subbed off during the final phase of the game. The youngster has room to improve.

Gerard Pique: 6.5/10

Gerard Pique looked commanding at the back, even though it was a surprise to see him start the game ahead of Ronald Araujo. He was strong with his tackles while his ability to read the game helped him neutralise the Getafe attacks on multiple occasions. The veteran was ultimately taken off at half-time, in light of his recent fitness problems.

Clement Lenglet: 5.5/10

Clement Lenglet was extremely unlucky to score the own goal, as a scuffed effort ricocheted off his body to find the back of the net. Aside from the own goal, however, the defender also looked really sloppy and committed a rash foul. It led to his substitution at half-time, with Koeman taking no prisoners.

Sergi Roberto: 6/10

Sergi Roberto tried to make things happen with his forward runs from the right wing-back role. Unfortunately, the Barcelona defender ended up having a rather quiet game, in which the player looked off the pace. Roberto certainly needs to play more in order to settle into the game, as we head towards the final phase of the campaign.

Frenkie de Jong: 7.5/10

Frenkie de Jong once again put in an impressive performance, keeping things neat and tidy in midfield in the first half, before shifting to a more defensive role after the restart. He barely looked troubled defensively and is really starting to acclimatise himself in almost every position assigned to him by Koeman. A true asset for Barcelona.

Sergio Busquets: 8/10

Sergio Busquets rolled back the years with a brilliant turn and pass to completely thread the Getafe defence and find Messi for the opener. Even after the assist, the veteran midfielder looked quite comfortable in the middle of the park, even when de Jong was shifted into a central defensive role, leaving in charge of midfield.

Pedri: 7.5/10

Pedri was impressive, as ever, in the hybrid 8/10 role that allowed him to find pockets of space and operate in the half-spaces. The youngster’s ability to not only carry the ball but also traverse through tight spaces, and execute well-timed forward balls makes him an asset for Barcelona in the creative department, with the player notably registering the assist for Messi’s second goal.

Jordi Alba: 7.5/10

Jordi Alba continued his good run of form with an excellent display. He kept the opposition defence busy with his forays down the flanks while the defender also linked up with his teammates. It appears the Spaniard is far better suited to operating in a wing-back role that gives him more privileges going forward.

Lionel Messi: 10/10

Lionel Messi was by far the best performer in Barcelona’s clinical win over Getafe. He looked lively right from the start, making a good run to capitalise on a wonderful pass to score the opener, before netting his second in the 33rd minute, showing excellent footwork and composure in front of goal.

In the second half, the Argentine offered a perfect cross to the near post to register the assist for Araujo’s goal while he was also selfless in giving Antoine Griezmann the opportunity to take the late penalty, even though he could have completed his hat-trick. Simply a class apart, this little magician.

Antoine Griezmann: 6.5/10

Griezmann may have scored the late goal that added more gloss to the scoreline for Barcelona, but it was largely a quiet game for the French international. While the forward did put in a hard-working shift, he was not involved enough in the game. He was also lucky to be handed a penalty late on, although the former Atletico Madrid man does deserve credit for his link-up play and work off the ball.

SUBSTITUTES

Ronald Araujo: 6.5/10

Ronald Araujo replaced Pique at the start of the second half, slotting alongside de Jong and Mingueza in defence. He committed an error to concede the penalty that allowed Getafe to pull one back, but made amends late in the game, scoring from a thumping header that restored the club’s two-goal cushion.

Ilaix Moriba: 6.5/10

Ilaix Moriba replaced Lenglet in the second half, slotting alongside Pedri and Busquets in midfield. The youngster looked determined to make an impact, often trying to carry the ball in and around the final third.

Francisco Trincao: 6/10

Francisco Trincao replaced the ineffective Roberto around the hour mark, but never really managed to explore the Getafe defence too much after coming on.

Samuel Umtiti: 6/10

A late replacement for Mingueza in the 75th minute, after the youngster was subjected to a rant by Koeman. Helped Barcelona see off their lead during the final phase of the game.

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