FC Barcelona head into the international two points behind Real Madrid after strolling to a remarkable 4-0 victory over Sevilla in a LaLiga clash on Sunday evening.
Arturo Vidal, who had lively cameo performance off the bench in midweek against Inter Milan, earned a starting berth alongside Frenkie de Jong, while Ousmane Dembele started ahead of Antoine Griezmann.
Sevilla launched the first attack five minutes in, but Marc Andre Ter Stegen punched clear following a threatening delivery into the area. Lucas Ocampos almost broke the deadlock 11 minutes in when his cut back to Luke de Jong inadvertently went on goal, but Ter Stegen’s outstretched leg saved the day.
Barca broke the deadlock three minutes to the half-hour mark with an outstanding overhead kick from Luis Suarez following a cross from Ousmane Dembele.
Vidal bagged Barca's second goal five minutes later after latching onto Arthur’s cross-field delivery amidst appeals for an offside, which the Video Assistant Referee disapproved following a review.
The Catalans went to halftime with a three-goal cushion after Dembele jinxed around the area before smashing into the bottom corner ten minutes to the break.
Julen Lopetegui put on a double change at the break as Munir El Haddadi and Joan Jordan replaced Oliver Torres and Nolito. Sevilla came close to halving the tally on four minutes when De Jong hit the post after dispossessing Jean-Clair Todibo in the danger area.
Sevilla’s resistance ended 12 minutes to the end when Lionel Messi curled a delightful free-kick over the wall amidst the best efforts of Vaclik, who struggled to keep it out.
Barca ended the encounter with nine men after Ronald Araujo and Dembele both saw red for off-the-ball incidents in the final minute of the match. The Catalans however marched to a comfortable victory to go into second place, two points off Los Blancos.