Luis Suarez scored three and Lionel Messi netted a stunning free kick as Barcelona beat a resolute but outclassed Celta Vigo.
Messi netted just before the hour mark after Suarez was fouled roughly 30 yards from goal, but Celta had been well worth the draw to that point.
Parity was restored when John Guidetti beat Claudio Bravo from 12 yards after he had been fouled by Jordi Alba, the left-back kicking the striker’s heels inside the area.
Suarez and Messi combined for Barca’s second as the hour approached, displaying the connection they have developed since the Uruguayan moved to Camp Nou with a delightful exchange.
It was an altogether simpler second for Suarez after the hard work was done by Neymar, played in by Messi and getting rounding the goalkeeper, his shot from a tight angle prodded over the line by the ex-Liverpool forward.
Suarez had another simple finish for his third but it was a goal of astounding creativity, Messi choosing not to shoot from the penalty spot even though he could have had his 300th La Liga goal if he scored.
Instead, Messi squared for Suarez, who ran in and buried past poor Sergio Alvarez, who was helpless later when Ivan Rakitic added a fifth and Neymar made it six.
Messi was fit to start after treatment for kidney stones but Ivan Rakitic was benched in favour of Sergi Roberto, while Celta made one change from the 1-1 draw with Sevilla, Josep Sene in for Theo Bongonda, with Nolito injured and Iago Aspas and Fabian Orellana banned.
Sene had the first shot on goal and Messi had Sergio Alvarez troubled with a free kick in a cagey opening 10 minutes.
Neymar’s attempt to beat Sergio was thwarted after a stunning pass from Andres Iniesta, Barca stepping up a gear but Celta lively as well and had the best chance, Carles Planas having his shot saved by Bravo after Sergi turned over possession.
Moments later though came Messi’s beautiful set-piece, and in an attempt to reply a fine effort from Claudio Beauvue, on the volley from a tight angle that Bravo had to fist away.
Bravo couldn’t stop Guidetti’s spot kick and Suarez tried to get Barca back in front right away but scuffed his shot wide before Neymar put one over, the score remaining 1-1 as half time arrived.
Celta had the woodwork to thank for the score staying that way in the opening minutes of the second when Neymar bamboozled the visiting defence and cut back to Suarez, whose shot hit the post.
It was Sergio to Celta’s rescue next as he got a firm hand to an Andres Iniesta shot, struck firmly left-footed but aimed a little too centrally.
Sergio was given no chance soon after. Suarez laid off to Messi, darted into the penalty area and met Messi’s dinked pass, perfectly into his path, and with one touch beat the goalkeeper into the top corner.
Guidetti and Daniel Wass both skied chances high over the bar as Celta looked to draw level again, Wass sending another shot straight at Bravo after Neymar’s heavy touch gave Celta a counter-attack.
Celta were made to rue their profligacy when Suarez gave Barca a two-goal lead and the tiring Galicians were routed with Suarez’s third and Rakitic’s lob – from a Suarez pass.
The visitors, who gave so much for 60 minutes, were out on their feet by the end and Neymar made the most of it, finally getting his goal and capping a stunning second half from the Catalans.
Source: Football Espana');