2016/2017 Spanish Primera División
  • Luis Suárez (59')
  • Lionel Messi (72', 90'+2')

Suarez and Messi lead Barcelona to victory at Osasuna

Barcelona cruised to a comfortable win at Osasuna as second-half strikes from Luis Suarez and two from Lionel Messi secured the points.

Barca carved out a string of chances in a dominant display against their bottom of the table hosts, who often pulled all 11 players back behind the ball as they faced waves of pressure before the break.

The first clear opportunity fell to Suarez after seven minutes, when Messi's fine pass found him but his attempted lob dropped just wide.

After 12 minutes they were even closer when Jordi Alba burst down the left and fed a pass to Suarez, who held off a defender but saw his effort come back off the post.

On the quarter of an hour mark Barcelona's best chance went begging as Suarez this time turned provider, squaring for Messi whose shot was blocked by advancing goalkeeper Nauzet Perez.

Andres Iniesta curled an optimistic effort wide amid signs that Barcelona were beginning to become frustrated by their failure to break through.

Another chance came and went as Suarez and Messi linked again and the latter saw his attempted lob clear the bar.

And they could have been behind on the half-hour mark when strugglers Osasuna were within inches of breaking through.

A low cross from the right from Miguel de las Cuevas seemed certain to be tapped in by the sliding Oriol Riera, all alone at the far post, but he was just unable to get the vital touch.

Barca were back on the attack within moments, Iniesta bending a volley wide after Messi's pass had fallen to him, and as the half entered its final five minutes a Suarez pass was cut out before the ball fell back to Messi, who stabbed an effort wide.

Osasuna enjoyed a brief spell of pressure just before the break, but an ambitious Roberto Torres strike from distance -- when he had colleagues better placed -- crashed back off a defender.

Osasuna replaced defender Miguel Flano, who suffered a knock in the first half, with David Garcia, and the home side almost took the lead in stunning fashion moments after the break.

Sergio Leon raced past Samuel Umtiti and bore down on the Barcelona penalty area, before bending a sublime chip past the stranded Marc-Andre ter Stegen but seeing the effort come back off the crossbar.

Leon was beginning to get the measure of Umtiti and got away from him again to create more problems before Barcelona cleared as osasuna began the half in positive fashion.

Messi tried to change the momentum by setting off on another direct run before he was crowded out inside the area.

But Barcelona made the breakthrough in the 59th minute when more crisp passing left Osasuna struggling and Alba's low cross from the left found the unmarked Suarez to tap home from close range.

Arda Turan was replaced by Denis Suarez as Luis Enrique made his first change of the afternoon, while the home side took off Oier Sanjurjo and replaced him with Tano Bonnin.

Messi had a low shot saved by Perez as Barcelona looked for the second goal that would all but guarantee the points, with the visitors enjoying increasing amounts of space against what already looked to be a flagging Osasuna defence.

With 20 minutes remaining and Barcelona in total control, Oriol Riera replaced Kenan Kodro -- but within moments Messi had pounced to seal the points for Barcelona.

Again the goal came through Alba on the left, with his cross being flicked home by Messi after 72 minutes.

And Barcelona put the icing on the cake in injury time when Messi jinked superbly away from three defenders before dinking a finish into the corner -- his 17th strike in nine appearances against Osasuna.

Spanish Primera División Standings

1 Real Madrid 24 +30 53
2 Barcelona 24 +28 52
3 Getafe 24 +14 42
4 Atletico Madrid 24 +8 40
5 Sevilla FC 24 +6 40
6 Villarreal 24 +10 38
7 Valencia 24 +1 38
8 Real Sociedad 23 +8 37
9 Granada 24 -2 33
10 Athletic Bilbao 24 +3 31
11 Osasuna 24 -1 31
12 Real Betis 24 -5 29
13 Levante 24 -6 29
14 Alavés 24 -9 27
15 Real Valladolid 24 -7 26
16 Eibar 23 -10 24
17 Celta Vigo 24 -13 21
18 Mallorca 24 -16 21
19 Leganes 24 -18 19
20 Espanyol 24 -21 19