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18th Dec 2016

Luis Suarez benefits from 11 seconds of magic from Andrés Iniesta and Lionel Messi


Simon Lloyd

Looking exclusively at the finish, there was nothing all that remarkable about Luis Suarez’s second goal against Espanyol on Sunday evening.

When Jiminez Gago spilled a Lionel Messi shot, the Uruguayan was in just the right place to capitalise and slotted the ball beyond the goalkeeper to double Barcelona’s lead. Like we said, nowt special at all – especially when compared to some of the things we’ve come to expect from this club over the last decade or so.

But what went before this was special, and as you might expect, Andrés Iniesta and Messi were at the heart of things.

Before you watch the video that follows, just have a look at how many Espanyol bodies were between Iniesta and the goal when he first receives the ball.

Screen Shot 2016-12-18 at 21.46.26

In this situation, many a footballer would do the sensible thing and play the ball out wide to a teammate… but Iniesta sets about trying to weave his way through the forest of Espanyol players before him.

Slightly off balance to begin with, the Spaniard evades the first challenge before slaloming around the second. With a third imminent, he pokes the ball through the legs of his opponent to Messi.

The Argentine instantly chalks up a nutmeg of his own, swiftly following this by nudging the ball away from the outstretched leg of another Espanyol player. Zigzagging between two more opponents, he eventually creates space for a shot.

By our count, that’s just 12 touches from the pair before Messi is able to get his shot in on goal.

Now sit back and enjoy…

Catch up with this week’s episode of Football Friday Live: