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Deportivo La Coruña
November 25, 2012
• 3:00 PM
• Estadio Ciudad de Valencia, Valencia
Referee: Pedro Jesús Pérez Montero
• Attendance: 24234
L. Messi 47', 51'
That's it for Goal.com's live coverage of tonight's action at Ciutat de Valencia. Thank you very much for you're company this evening and remember to stick around for more reaction to Barcelona's impressive victory. Bye for now!
Levante will be a little disappointed by their second half display but there are very few sides who wouldn't have succumbed to that Barca performance. Next up for Tito Vilanova's men is a home match against Athletico Bilbao next Saturday.
FULL TIME: LEVANTE 0-4 BARCELONA. What a second half. Levante were completely undone by the Andres Iniesta show and the game was over in a flash during 15 mesmerizing minutes from the Catalan side. They re-establish that three point gap at the top of the table and now hold a massive 11-point lead over their fierce rivals Real Madrid.
90' + 1'
Fantastic little bit of skill from Pedro who sells Jaunfran the perfect dummy. His final ball isn't quite as impressive though.
The save by Valdes from Angel on the follow up is actually better than the penalty save itself. Messi tries his luck from range for his hat-trick but Manua just about holds on to the ball. into 2 minutes of injury time now.
Missed Penalty Barkero
Penalty save Víctor Valdés
GREAT SAVE BY VALDES!! Barkero's penalty is very casual as he trots up towards the ball. Valdes gets down to save it and then Levante fail to find the net with two rebounds. It just isn't the Valencian side's night.
Yellow Card Carles Puyol
Penalty to Levante! Puyol has been booked for a foul in the box and the home side have the chance for a consolation.
Well they are still creating chances but Juanfran has to hit the target from there. Lell does well to muscle his way to the by-line and his cut-back deflects out of the area to the fullback who smashes his effort over the bar.
The visitors are more than happy to keep the ball now. I don't think Levante have touched the ball since Manua picked the ball out of the net for Fabregas's goal.
Iniesta's spell of brilliance at the beginning of this half has brought this game to its knees. A flat crowd in Valencia now and both teams look like they're just playing down the clock.
Another change for the visitors as Xavi makes way for Thiago. Another fantastic display from him tonight.
Couple of substituions for either side as Barcelona replace Alba with Adriano and Juanlu makes way for Angel.
Yellow Card Cesc Fàbregas
With this result in the bag the Catalan community can go back to worrying about their elections tonight. If the pro-independence party are successful we could see Barcelona turning out in the French League in the not-too-distant future. Well, if their political leaders are to be believed.
Barcelona's dominance on the scoreline has been matched by their dominance on the pitch yet again. The Catalans have enjoyed 80% of the possession in Valencia tonight.
Messi may be the man with the most goals on the park but all the praise is going to one of his teammates. @phreshreezy is adimant that Andres Iniesta is man of the match. I don't think many people are going to disagree.
That was Martins last action of the game as Angel Rodriguez replaces him. Pedro goes close to adding a fifth for Barca but curls his effort wide.
I know they say football is a game of two halves but this is madness. I don't think anyone could have predicted this at halftime. Unless they are lying through their teeth. Meanwhile Martins has a chance to reduce the deficit but his effort is saved by Valdes.
Goal Cesc Fàbregas
INIESTA IS ON FIRE!!! He sets up a fourth after a lovely exchange of passes with Cesc Fabregas. Levante have just capitulated and you really do worry what the final score could be. Barca are in the mood.
Nabil El Zhar
Levante react by making a substitution. El Zhar comes off to be replaced by Pedro Rios.
It was Lionel Messi who returned the favour to Iniesta for the third goal, drawing the defenders and sliding the ball into space for Iniesta. In the blink of an eye Barca have this game wrapped up.
INIESTA ADDS ANOTHER! Well that is a ferocious strike! Barca are making one of the meanest defences i nthe league look very ordinary. The Spanish international picks up the ball on the edge of the area and lashes the ball into the top corner before Manua can even see it. Great strike.
A long 35 minutes or so for Levante now. Their fans must have been dreaming of a big result at halftime. They've gone a bit quiet now.
I hold my hands up. I thought this was going to prove a tough second half for Los Blaugrana but the faith shown in the little Argentinian demi-god has proved well-placed. He is unstoppable.
Goal Lionel Messi
MESSI MAKES IT TWO!!! What a start to he second half for Barca. It's the same combination that produced the first goal Iniesta takes on Lell down the left and squeezes a low cross into Messi which the Argentinian sweeps home.
Levante look to react to going behind and they almost produce a wonder strike! Diop's wild flick into the area is met bu first-time volley from Barkero but his shot flashes just wide.
That will be a huge blow for the home side. They defended resolutely in the opening period but that was far to easy for a side of Barcelona's quality.
Goal Lionel Messi
YOU-KNOW-WHO DOES IT AGAIN! Barely two minutes played in the second half and all Levante's hard work in the first half is undone. A slide rule pass from Iniesta sends through Messi for his 81st goal of the year as he dinks the ball over Manua. Simple stuff.
Barcelona get us back underway for the second half. There are no changes to either side.
Tonnes of Barcelona fans on twitter tonight including @snowpyrate and @Nyakesh. There are a couple of you who on the Levante side of the fence however, including @Davidchibike who expects Martins to cause Puyol and company more problems in the second half.
Levante's moto is "You might win, but you will definitely suffer". So far Barcelona's attack has been struggling at the hands of a well organised defence. Martinez will be very happy with his sides performance so far.
A few more of you have got in touch on twitter. A lot of you are still backing the Catalan giants to come good despite a frustrating first half: @RoyMessias barcelona getting closer with each attack. @Don1olamide its going to be a tough match but barca are going to win even if its by a lone goal.
HALFTIME LEVANTE 0-0 BARCELONA. So we go into the break level at Ciutat de Valencia. Barcelona began to threaten more towards the endo f the half but they've yet to overrun their opponents. Could we be in for more of the same second half?
This late surge from the visitors looks exactly that...late. Only 1 minute of added time and we're going to go into the break level.
Iniesta is again causing trouble down the left and again his cut back has to be hoofed behind for a goal kick. Levante are having to work a little harder now.
Even better chance from the corner but Pique heads wide from the penalty spot. He was unmarked too.
Best move of the match from Barca. A neat reverse flick from Iniesta gives Jordi Alba space down the left but his cross is turned behind for a corner. That was all caused by Messi running at Levante.
It was a tight call but I reckon the Nigerian would have been onside if that had gone in. Lucky escape for the Catalans.
Big chance for Levante! Juanfran meets a corner with a volley at the back post and his cross-come-shot is met by the head of Martins but his touch isn't heavy enough to direct it towards goal.
Messi swings in a free-kick but it's headed straight at Manua by Pedro. Chances are few and far between at the moment.
A lot of you on twitter are betting on one man to set this match alight: @sweetYESU messi will break the deadlock. He has been fantastic this season. I can bet on him. @BrianMosoti with messi you never know. Keep your thoughts coming in.
The Valencian side just reminded Barca that there are two teams in this match. They've shown before this season that they can hurt the big sides.
Fantastic play from Juanlu! The defender nutmegs Pique on the edge of the area and tires to pick out Barkero in the centre. The pass is just behind him though and he sends his shot way over.
Decent effort from Xavi. He reacts to a Navarro's clearance by volleying it back goalwards. On target from the midfielder but straight at Munua.
Over half way through the opening period and Barcelona have still not managed to break the deadlock. Do you think they'll manage a breakthrough before the half? You can get in touch with your predictions, and comments via twitter, just tweet @harryslavin to get in touch.
Levante's first attack in ten minutes almost backfires as they give away the ball and allow the Catalan side to break. The survive as Messi's through ball is just a touch ahead of Iniesta.
Barca starting to find their rythm now. Xavi finds space and lets fly from 25-yards. Wide again but their getting closer.
You cannot give Messi any space. The little Argentine receives the ball outside of the box and just one touch creates the space for shot. This time he drags it wide of Manua's left post.
The chance was actually created by Xavi's deft flick. Fantastic touch but still no opener for the visitors.
Oh that was almost a sniff. A gorgeous touch from Messi allows him to play in Iniesta but the Spaniard decides to play a one-two instead of taking aim and his team-mate can't control the return pass.
Levante's defence is looking tight so far, Messi hasn't been given a sniff. Frustrating early stages for the league leaders so far
With Montoya's arrival on the pitch, Barcelona are now fielding a sdie made entirely of graduates of their youth system. Simply phenomenal stat considering the trends of modern football.
Further concern for Barceloan is the fintess of Dani Alves who has just been forced off. Montoya comes on in his place.
Juanfran Heads over from the resulting corner. Promising signs for the home side.
GREAT MOVE FROM LEVANTE! Junalu swings in a zipping cross from the left but misses everyone. the ball then falls to Barkero on the edge of the area whose effort has to be tipped over by Valdes.
Iniesta gets himself into a dangerous position twice in a minute down the left hand side but a lack of support in the box lets him down. Fantastic footwork from the Spaniard as ever.
The Nigerian man is already causing the visitors concern as he latches onto a loose ball but cannot bring it under control. A better touch and he could have been through there.
Oba Martins gets a hold of the ball for the first time tonight and drifts past a couple of tackles before being hauled down. He will be a nuisance to Tito's men throughout this match tonight.
Barcelona have settled in quite nicely and are already looking to assert their domination on the possession front. Fabregas tries to play in Iniesta over the top but the ball roles through for Manua.
Referee Pedro Montero blows the whistle and we are underway at Ciutat de Valencia.
With Atletico Madrid's emphatic 4-0 win over Sevilla, Barca are only top on goal difference at the moment. They'll be hoping to restore their three point lead this evening.
The teams are out and we're about to get underway here, Tito Vilanova's side are in their fiery orange and yellow away kit.
Barcelona have won every single game on the road so far this season but this will definitely be their sternest test so far. Levante, like their opponents, secured European progression midweek and could move up to 4th if they upset the odds tonight.
And here's how the visitors start the match. BARCA: Valdes; Alves, Pique, Puyol, Alba; Fabregas, Xavi, Busquets; Pedro, Messi, Iniesta. Subs: Pinto, Montoya, Thiago, Adriano, Tello, Mascherano, Song.
Let's get some team news up before the teams head out, starting with the home side. LEVANTE: Munúa; Lell, Ballesteros, David Navarro, Juanfran, Iborra, Diop, El Zhar, Barkero, Juanlu, Martins. Subs: Keylor Navas, Rodas, Nikos, Pallardó, Pedro Ríos, Ángel, Rubén.
Real Madrid are the only team to escape Valencia with three points against Los Granotes this season, relying on Alvaro Morata's late winner earlier this month. Their solid home form is part of the reason Juan Ignacio Martinez's men sit in a lofty 6th position in the table.
So after Real Madrid's shock defeat to Real Betis last night, the Catalan side have the opportunity to put 11-points between themselves and their bitter rivals. Levante will have something to say about that though and are in good form at home this season.
Good evening and welcome to Goal.com's coverage of Barcelona's La Liga clash with Levante at Ciutat de Valencia. I'm Harry Slavin and I'll be here to take you through tonight's action
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