By 90Min
September 26, 2018

Barcelona's table topping start to La Liga was halted as a dogged Leganes came from behind to stun the reigning champions at Estadio Municipal de Butarque. 

The game was an imperfect way to mark Lionel Messi's 700th Barcelona appearance - a special feat for a magnificent player. 

Ernesto Valverde handed first starts of the season to both Thomas Vermaelen and academy graduate Munir, as he opted to rest Jordi Alba and Luis Suarez. 

Despite the prospect of travelling to Wembley for the Champions League showdown with Spurs just a week away, and a crunch fixture with Atletic Bilbao sandwiched in-between, Valverde traveled strongly, with Messi, Coutinho and Dembele leading the line for la Blaugrana.

Leganes, meanwhile, came into the match winless, with just one point from their opening five La Liga games.

Alex Livesey/GettyImages

Coutinho opened proceedings with a sumptuous volley after just 11 minutes, after a wonderful pass from Lionel Messi. 


Just five minutes later, Messi nearly brokered his way onto the score-sheet as his curling effort ricocheted off the bar and out for a goal-kick. 


After being wholly dominated throughout the first half, Leganes came out after the interval as a completely different team. 

OSCAR DEL POZO/GettyImages

El Zhar nodded Leganes level on the 51st, before more woeful Barca defending saw Rodriguez take advantage of a Gerard Pique blunder to smash home  a second in the 52nd minute.


Barcelona came close to grabbing an illusive equaliser in the final 30 minutes, but Ivan Cuellar as on hand to pull off a stunning double save to condemn Barcelona to a disastrous defeat.


See our breakdown of the game below.


FC Barcelona


Key Talking Point


Barcelona, wearing luminescent yellow, started brightly. Coutinho's precise volley found the far corner before Messi rattled the bar just five minutes later. 

Despite this, the key talking point will be the concession of two quickfire goals in the second half.

Rewarded for their gritty nature, Leganes stunned Barcelona to score two goals in two minutes after some woeful defending from Pique, securing their first three points of the season in the process.

Player Ratings

FC Barcelona XI: Ter Stegen (6), Vermaelen (6), Umtiti (6), Pique (5), S. Roberto (6), Coutinho (7), Busquets (5), Rakitic (5), Dembele (6), Messi (6), Munir (4)

Substitues: Cillessen, Semedo, Alba (6) , Vidal, Arthur, Malcom (5), Suarez (5)

Star Man


Phillippe Coutinho - The stand out performer in a very average Barcelona team. Brilliantly firing Barcelona into the lead after 11 minutes, Coutinho and co. looked set to waltz past Leganes


Despite this, Coutinho only called Ivan Cuellar into action one more time throughout the following 80 minutes as he and his Barcelona teammates failed to see off a team set for a La Liga relegation battle this season.


Worst Performer


Munir - Despite a number of Barcelona players under performing, Munir struggled to impress on his first La Liga start of the season. Appearing to be feeling the weight of the badge, Munir had more of an impact apologising to his teammates rather than threatening the Leganes goal.


Looking Ahead

After slipping up at home to Girona at the weekend, Barcelona's woes have continued here. Despite leading the chasing pack, there will now be even more question marks over Barcelona as they face further tests in the coming weeks.

Ernesto Valverde's men entertain Atletic Bilbao on Saturday, who find themselves without a win in eight La Liga fixtues against Barca.

Following this, a trip to England and Wembley Stadium awaits, as Tottenham Hotspur play host for group game two in pot B.

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HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)