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Villa back as Barca hit five, Madrid held to draw

Published on Aug 20, 2012 6:37 AM
Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (2nd right) is congratuled by teammates after scoring a goal during the Spanish League football match between FC Barcelona and Real Sociedad at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on Aug 19, 2012. -- PHOTO: AFP

MADRID (AFP) - Barcelona thrashed Real Sociedad 5-1 on Sunday with two goals from Lionel Messi and one each for Carles Puyol, Pedro Rodriguez and David Villa, in his first game back after eight months out with injury.

The victory at Camp Nou came after champions Real Madrid started their title defence with a 1-1 draw at home to Valencia.

Barca's La Liga opener under new coach Tito Vilanova saw them 4-1 ahead by half-time with Messi in sparkling form.

Puyol powered home a header from a corner on two minutes before Chori Castro finished off a sweeping move to level for the away team.

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