Published On: Mon, Oct 2nd, 2017

Messi and Co play in an empty stadium due to Catalonia crisis

Share This
Tags

There aren’t many empty seats left in the stadium when superstar laden team like FC Barcelona led by Lionel Messi take to the field. On Sunday though it was a different story altogether as the 5 time Champions League trophy winners were greeted to an empty 90000 capacity stadium.

Club president Josep Maria Bartomeu said the stadium was closed to show opposition to police violence against voters in Catalonia’s independence referendum, which was banned by the national government, and not over safety concerns.
Spanish riot police on Sunday burst into polling stations across Catalonia to try to halt the referendum on a split from Spain and Catalan officials said more than 800 people were injured in the crackdown.

Barca’s Sergio Busquets scored for the first time in the league in three seasons to give the hosts the lead in the 49th minute, leaping to head in a curling corner from Messi. Argentine Messi then struck his 10th league goal of the season to double Barca’s advantage in the 70th. He barely celebrated the strike, adding to an atmosphere more akin to a training ground exercise than a league game.

Messi then latched onto a pass from fellow forward Luis Suarez to pounce again in the 77th, sealing Barca’s seventh straight domestic league win this season and maintaining their 100 percent start in La Liga and the Champions League.

Barcelona lead the standings on 21 points, five clear of Sevilla in second, while Real are fifth on 14. Valencia, with 15, climbed above Atletico Madrid on goal difference.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>