Messi treble spurs five-goal Barça
Lionel Messi's hat-trick led Barcelona to a resounding 5-0 victory at the Nou Camp over Real Mallorca.
The Argentinian forward netted three times in 18 first-half minutes as his side quickly took control of the game. The second half brought a first senior goal for Isaac Cuenca and a superb late goal from Dani Alves to round out the scoring.
Barça hit their stride immediately and Seydou Keita's header from Thiago Alcantara's corner was saved by Dudu Aouate and Dani Alves' long-range effort was blocked by Ivan Ramis. But Mallorca could easily have taken the lead when Victor, six yards out, failed to convert Gonzalo Castro's cross.
And they paid the price when Emilio Nsue's handball allowed Messi to score from the spot in the 13th minute. David Villa then forced a fine save from Aouate before Barcelona doubled their lead in the 21st minute when Dani Alves' deep cross and Adriano's mishit across the face of goal presented Messi with a tap-in.
And he completed his hat-trick in sumptuous fashion on the half-hour mark, tucking Dani Alves' cross calmly past Aouate with a first-time finish from the edge of the box.
Adriano was desperate for a goal and tried his luck after Aouate tipped away Cuenca's cross, but his effort struck the prone Jose Chico and deflected away for a corner.
Thiago headed wide early in the second half, but it was soon 4-0 when the impressive Adriano threaded in Cuenca to open his account. Messi hammered over from range before Barça handed a debut to 17-year-old Gerard Deulofeu.
Chico shot wide for Mallorca, but the Catalans continued to control the game and Aouate parried away Messi's powerful free-kick. The resulting corner was sent to Dani Alves 20 yards out and he volleyed into the box, where Gerard Pique back-heeled towards goal and Chico cleared brilliantly off the line.
Messi headed wide from Dani Alves' deep cross, but the latter added a fitting coat of gloss to the scoreline with a stunning fifth in stoppage time when his dipping 25-yard shot flicked in off the underside of the bar.
It was also Barça's eighth consecutive clean sheet in all competitions and their third 5-0 win in a home record in this season's La Liga.