Barca open LaLiga with 6-goal thriller

LaLiga

The post-Lionel Messi era at FC Barcelona started with a 4-2 win over Real Socieded in LaLiga on Sunday evening.

A debut for signings Memphis Depay and Eric Garcia set out the Catalans giants stall, as Antoine Griezmann and Martin Braithwaite featured too.

Griezmann troubled the visitors earlier on with a hooked volley that sailed narrowly wide before he headed a near post corner-kick against the woodwork.

Barcelona didn’t need to wait long to go ahead as Gerard Pique attacked a telling free-kick from Depay soon before the closing period of the first stanza to head into the near corner.

The Catalans closed in on another nearer to the interval through a low attempt in the centre of the area by Depay, but it was parried by goalkeeper Alex Remiro.

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Sociedad weren’t spared and gave away a second goal courtesy of a free-header in the area by Braithwaite on the brink of halftime following a cross from Frenkie De Jong.

Ronald Koeman’s men were unfortunate not to add a third following halftime when Jordi Alba dragged a one-on-one wide, whilst Sociedad threw on Jon Bautista and Ander Barrenetxea.

Inevitably Barcelona secured a third towards the final quarter after Remiro palmed a shot into the path of a galloping Braithwaite, who needed no second invitation to seal a brace.

Socieded pulled a goal back with eight minutes to go off a first-time finish in the area by Julen Lobete Cienfuegos following a smart forward pass.

The visitors reduced the Blaugrana to more anxiety in the last five minutes as a free-kick from Mikel Oyarzabal gave goalkeeper Neto no chance.

However, Barca allayed any fears of surrendering their lead when Sergi Roberto helped a cross from Braithwaite into the net to see out the contest and an opening day win.

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