Sevilla 2-2 barcelona laliga 2018 goals, as it happened, report –

It was as if somebody had pressed the mute button on the Sánchez Pizjuán. From jubilant to jaded in two minutes and one swift swish of Lionel Messi’s left foot. It was a finish we have seen so many times before. Messi watched the ball towards him, adjusted his feet, and caressed it in to the bottom corner with a faint hint of curl. So predictable yet so hard to stop.

Barcelona salvaged a late draw against Sevilla to extend their unbeaten run in LaLiga. Vincenzo Montella’s side led with two minutes remaining through goals from Franco Vázquez and Luis Muriel. Luis Suárez clawed one back on 88 minutes. And then, one minute later, Messi struck.

Both sides could have been forgiven for serving up a helping of going-through-the-motion stodge, given that they have Champions League commitments on Tuesday and Wednesday.

It was for that reason that Ernesto Valverde named Messi as a substitute. The Argentine is still struggling with hamstring issues.

Yet the match was utterly enthralling. Sevilla started strongly and took the lead ten minutes before half time. Joaquín Correa cushioned a cross from Jesus Navas with a silk touch and fed Vázquez inside the six-yard box to convert underneath the ‘keeper.

89′ GOOOOOOOOOOOOL! MESSI! INCREDIBLE! Barça pick the ball straight back up after kick-off and storm forward. Messi meets a pass on the edge of the box, and with that trademark stroke of his left foot, guides it in to the bottom corner with a hint of curl.

77′ Oooh, the ball realy did sit up nicely for Jesus Navas there. Piqué half-clears a cross straight in to the ex-Man City winger’s path. He slams it towards the top corner with the outside of his boot, and slams it in to the netting behind the goal. A little more serenity was needed there.

71′ Simon Kjaer is in Gandalfian, ‘You shall not pass’ mode. He stops Coutinho finding Suárez again, and again it’s an interception enabled by flawless positioning and reading of the game. It’s not easy to quantify those attributes, but he’s got them in abundance.

65′ THIS GAME IS BONKERS! The Sevilla cavalry charge forward again, Muriel with the ball at his feet. He lays it off to Banega, who cuts inside and slams the ball against Piqué. It looked bound for the bottom corner. This is as end-to-end as any match I’ve ever seen.

61′ Suárez grazes the post! Messi frees Alba in the box. After ghosting past Layun, who decided against committing to a tackle, Alba slides it to the far post. Suárez tries desperately to get there, but by the time he does the angle is too acute and he hits the outside of the post.

36′ GOOOOOOOOL! Franco Vázquez! Correa takes down Navas’ deep cross with a silken touch of his outstretched right leg. He exchanges the ball with Escudero before sliding it in to the six-yard box where Vázquez, unmarked, puts it beyond the ‘keeper.

25′ Superb cross in from Navas, right down the corridor of uncertainty. But by the time it navigates several Barcelona defenders and reaches N’Zonzi at the far post, the midfielder has edged ahead of the flight of the ball and another chance goes begging.

19′ Excellent wing play from Dembélé, who scampers down the right with the Sevilla defence expecting an offside flag that never came (it should have, he was yards offside). He commits Escudero and flashes a cut back to the edge of the six-yard box, where Coutinho meets it but can’t find a way through the bodies.

12′ Excellent defending from Sergi Roberto. N’Zonzi rumbles down the right and after a one-two with Navas, cuts the ball to the far post. Correa should really have taken it first time on his left foot. Instead, he cuts inside to shoot with his right, and finds only the shin of Roberto.

7′ A heart-in-mouth moment for Sergio Rico, who is caught in possession and gives the ball to Iniesta. The ‘keeper is out of his goal and Iniesta attempts to loft it over him from 35 yards. A decent effort, but it bounces wide of the post and Rico was back to recover anyway.

Messi’s absence from the team sheet is the most noteworthy news ahead of kick-off, but Gerard Piqué’s presence in the team is equally puzzling. The centre-half has been nursing a knee injury for several weeks, and looked in discomfort during Spain’s victory over Argentina.

"He’s had a few twinges but it’s not worth risking him with the chance he could get a tear." That was what Ernesto Valverde had to say about Lionel Messi’s troublesome hamstring in his pre-match news conference yesterday. That seems a prudent approach with Roma looming in the Champions League.