Made a brilliant stop to deny Giuseppe Rossi in the first half but the striker's effort would not have counted in any case. Produced a decent save to keep out a free-kick in the second period but was otherwise untroubled.
The only real defender in Barcelona's three-man back line, Abidal was solid in his defensive duties and also got forward well to support his team-mates in attack. A great all-round performance from the Frenchman.
Fantastic goal from the youngster to set Barca on their way to victory as he waltzed past several Villarreal defenders to slot a low drive past Diego Lopez, and later set up Messi for Barca's fifth goal with an inch-perfect cross.
Cesc looks better and better with every game for Barca. He almost set up Messi with a delightful chipped pass early on and timed his run perfectly to score his side's second of the night. He also came close with a fierce angled drive in the second period.
Wonderful crossfield pass to Alexis Sanchez is the second half and then set up Messi for Barca's fourth goal. Linked up well throughout and made sure Barca didn't miss Xavi, who started this one on the bench.
Keita was caught out in possession in several occasions and was perhaps the weak link in this Barca side. One of those allowed Villarreal to mount a counter-attack, but it came to nothing and overall it was a steady if unspectacular performance from the Malian.
Busquets was also at the back and had little to do against a Villarreal side who struggled to cross the halfway line for much of the game. Solid and correct, the Spain star also got forward well to crash a header against the bar.
Gave Cristian Zapata a torrid time as he attacked down the right-hand side, twisted and turned the Colombian inside out. Wasn't decisive this time, but it was a positive performance nevertheless.
Back in defence as an unorthodox right-back, Mascherano showed touches of class with some timely interventions. Fell asleep to let in Rossi in the first half but redeemed himself with a great tackle on the Italy forward later on.
Marked his league debut with a fine goal, but wasn't involved too much before that. Nevertheless, he worked hard, was always available and will get better and better as he gets used to his new surroundings.
Scored two excellent goals and set up Cesc's goal with a superb pass. It was another outstanding performance, but it is only what we have come to expect from the brilliant Argentine.
Decent near-post save from Messi's angled drive in the first half but endured a miserable evening after that. Wasn't at fault for any of the goals, however.
Stretched out a leg to clear when Fabregas was when clean through in first half, but was stagnant as Thiago gave Barca the lead and was at fault for second goal as well. Failed to cope with Barca's movement and was constantly caught out of position.
Could only stand and watch as Thiago waltzed through the Villarreal defence to make it 1-0 and was left all at sea as Barca dominated throughout.
Not an adequate replacement for Joan Capdevila and it shows. Had trouble with Alexis and was pushed back deep into his half for most of the game.
Booked for a handball late on but could have seen yellow for several cynical fouls before that. Not a central midfielder and it showed against the best side there is.
Ran ragged by Pedro on the left and will look forward to facing more modest opponents. Still struggling to convince at his new side.
One good run in the first half came to nothing and he was just too deep after that, failing to make an impact for a Villarreal side that needed him desperately.
Totally swamped and failed to track Barcelona's midfielders on a forgettable night. Overwhelmed and unsupported in midfield.
Couldn't offer an attacking outlet for his team in order to take the pressure off of his defence, and in the end Barca passed rings round him and left him bamboozled.
Failed to sufficiently hold up the ball and take the pressure off his team, and was eventually sacrificed in the second half as Villarreal resorted to damage limitation.
Looked lively but was largely unsupported. Tested Valdes with a drive and follow-up shot in first half but was offside anyway and must have wished he had been playing on the other side - something which looked probable earlier this summer.
- 31 Diego Mariño
- 15 Catalá
Came on as a substitute early in the second half but the cause was already lost by then. Failed to make a difference.
Failed to make an impact.
Came on in the second half to tighten up, but it was already 4-0 by then. Nothing much to add. And he didn't.
- 11 H. Pérez
- 9 M. Rubén