Lionel Messi continued his fine scoring form for Barcelona, grabbing two goals and setting up one for David Villa against a toothless Sevilla.Barcelona completely dominated the first-half taking full advantage of their superiority bagging two goals. Lionel Messi was simply sublime for the home team and made an invincible tag team with partner David Villa.
Messi gave his side the lead before the game had even got going, tucking home the rebound from Pedro's cross.
The little Argentine wizard who was playing in the middle of a front three, caused havoc for his markers dropping deep to orchestrate from midfield and with Sevilla unaware who was meant to pick him up, the forward showed player after player a clean set of heels.
David Villa capitalised on his team-mate's gliding gracefulness on the field, receiving a pass from Messi and firing a wonderous shot into the top corner to make it two.
Abdoulay Konko was sent off for a second yellow card before half-time and there was no way back for los Nervionenses.
A gift of a goal for Dani Alves, a fine solo effort from Lionel Messi and David Villa late on sealed a comfortable three points for the Catalan giants.
Within one minute of the game Barcelona were twice close to taking the lead. David Villa and Messi linking up fluently down the right and the later chipped a dangerous ball in, which was cleared. Barcelona worked it back inside to Xavi but the midfielder clipped his shot agonisingly wide.
Great defending denied Barcelona once more just three minutes later but Sevilla couldn't clear their lines and paid the ultimate price. Herrera Javi Varas blocked the first chance but Lionel Messi made no mistake with the rebound, biding his time before applying the finish.
Sevilla were slow to get going but almost had a goal of their own in the opening ten minutes. Luis Fabiano was quick to find space in behind the Blaugrana defenders but slashed his shot wide of Victor Valdes' right post.
Messi and Villa were combining to deadly effect, the little Argentine in fine form releasing the Spanish striker between the two centre backs but the defenders were able to recover and force Villa wide of goal. Villa did finally test Javi Varas from a slightly tight angle after being found by a classy backheel, but his shot was tame.
Sevilla got their second chance of the game, Diego Perotti showing a frightful turn of pace on the right wing then picking out Diego Capel at the far post, but the left winger fired his volley into the body of Valdes and Xavi removed the danger.
David Villa doubled Barcelona's lead in the 24th minute with a outstanding finish. It was again Messi that ghosted past Romaric into space and played the ball wide to Villa, the No. 7 cut inside one defender and from a similar angle to his earlier effort, arrowed a swerving shot up and round the keeper.
Pedro continued to look dangerous down the left for the hosts and it was his speed and trickery which almost made the third goal for Xavi but Capel got tight to the midfielder to deny him.
As the game reached stoppage time, Sevilla were given a huge blow. Pedro flicking the ball round Abdoulay Konko, who had finally had enough, and the right-back kicked out at the winger with a lazy tackle. It was his second yellow of the night and an early bath for the French born defender.
The extra man advantage allowed Dani Alves to roam forward from right-back in the second-half after being very shrewd in his defensive work. The Brazilian getting his shot away after linking up with David Villa but it was straight at the keeper.
The defender however was gifted a goal minutes after his first chance. A terrible header from Romaric left his keeper in no man's land and Dani Alves latched on to the back pass to steer it past Javi Varas. The former Sevilla player graciously refused to celebrate with his team-mates.
With an hour gone, Pep Guardiola was able to rotate and rest some of his players, introducing Javier Mascherano and Bojan.
Barcelona were in no mood to hold back against their visitors. Messi picked up the ball just inside the Sevilla half and run to the edge of the area before placing a left footed shot low into the corner; it was a goal worthy of his performance.
Mascherano recovered his own mistake well with just over ten minutes left. The substitute gave the ball away in the middle of the park and then chased back 40 yards to block Alvaro Negredo's shot.
David Villa came a matter of inches from getting his second of the night. Messi played a neat ball through, Villa rounded the keeper but went too wide allowing defenders time to retreat and clear off the line.
With the last kick of the game, Villa did get his second. Messi again played his part feeding in Sergio Busquets. The holding midfielder squared it for Villa who picked his corner from the edge of the box to finish the night at 5-0.
The victory moves Barcelona back to within one point of La Liga leaders Real Madrid and went some way to closing the gap in the two sides' goal difference. Sevilla remain in sixth place, still in touch of Valencia, after los Che's slip up against Real Zaragoza.