Luis Suarez: Philippe Coutinho's Barcelona debut was "very good"

Lionel Messi scored a spectacular free kick to give Barcelona a come-from-behind 2-1 win over struggling Alaves on Sunday, keeping the Catalans 11 points clear at the top of La Liga and preserving their unbeaten record in the league.

With just six minutes left, Barcelona were awarded a free-kick and Messi stepped up to produce a spectacular effort that beat Pacheco to give the three points to Barcelona. They never panicked when going one goal down, remained composed and let their quality come to the fore as they overturned the early deficit.

Barcelona: Marc-Andre ter Stegen 7 (out of 10), Nelson Semedo 6, Gerard Pique 6, Samuel Umtiti 6, Lucas Digne 5, Paulinho 6, Ivan Rakitic 6, Andres Iniesta 7, Philippe Coutinho 5, Lionel Messi 7, Luis Suarez 7.

With an 11-point lead at the top of La Liga and a Champions League last-16 tie against Chelsea coming up next month, things are looking good for Valverde's side this term.

Alaves fought admirably for the entire 90 minutes, with Guidetti and Ibai Gomez particularly impressive, but unfortunately for them it was not to be, as Barcelona had just too much class in the end. I thought he could help us from there. "We're suffering more mentally than physically", Zidane said.


"For that we needed players who move well in space like Leo and him". When quizzed about the handball, Valverde said: "Apart from cutting off his hand, we couldn't do anything". "There are always controversial moments in games, sometimes they go against us, other times they go in our favour".

Valverde could opt to give club-record signing Philippe Coutinho his first start after the Brazil worldwide made his debut off the bench in Thursday's cup win over Espanyol.

Ernesto Valverde's side boast an 11-point gap at the top of the table and now lie 19 points clear of fourth placed Real Madrid.

Barca coach Ernesto Valverdes said he was happy with Coutinho who had started Thursday's Copa del Rey clash with Valencia on the bench before making a second-half appearance.


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