EURO FOOTBALL: Messi powers Barca to easy win; Ronaldo scores twice
MADRID (AFP) – Lionel Messi scored in his first game since trying to leave Barcelona as Ronald Koeman began his tenure as coach by overseeing a 4-0 Liga demolition of Villarreal on Sunday.
Messi converted from the spot 10 minutes before half-time and then the Argentine’s cross forced Pau Torres into an own-goal, after an early double from the 17-year-old Ansu Fati had already put Barca in charge.
It meant Barcelona’s past, present and future were all among the goals on the same afternoon as Luis Suarez, whose departure was confirmed on Thursday, marked his Atletico Madrid debut by scoring twice in a 6-1 win over Granada.
In Milan, Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice to salvage a point for 10-man Juventus in a 2-2 draw at Roma as Napoli hammered Genoa 6-0 in Serie A on Sunday.
Champions Juventus were trailing 2-1 and a man down after an hour at the Stadio Olimpico after a Jordan Veretout brace for the hosts and Adrien Rabiot’s sending off.
But a towering Ronaldo header grabbed the equaliser in the 69th minute to avoid handing new Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo a first defeat.
”Going behind complicated things but we got an important point,” said Ronaldo.
”We’re at the start of the season, with a new coach. But the team are working well, I’m confident for the future.
”Pirlo? It’s still early days, but we’re working with a smile, that’s important.”