Football: Magical Messi hits four as Barcelona thrash Eibar

Barcelona’s Lionel Messi celebrates scoring their sixth goal with Aleix Vidal. PHOTO: REUTERS

MADRID (REUTERS) - Lionel Messi struck four goals as Barcelona romped past Eibar 6-1 on Tuesday (Sept 19) to extend their lead at the top of La Liga and maintain their 100 per cent record.

The Argentine was at his brilliant best as he lethally picked off the demoralised Basques, opening the scoring from the penalty spot in the 21st minute after Nelson Semedo was brought down by Alex Galvez.

With Barcelona leading 3-1, Messi struck three more times to help the Catalans move up to 15 points from five games, five clear of second-placed Sevilla, having played one match more.

Paulinho had headed home from a corner to score Barcelona's second before halftime.

It was his second goal in the last two games, a feat matched by Denis Suarez who increased Barcelona's lead to 3-0, before Sergi Enrich pulled one back for Eibar.

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