Barcelona cruised to a 3-0 win over Sevilla with a mesmerising attacking display on Wednesday thanks to two goals from Lionel Messi and one from Luis Suarez in the space of eight minutes to provisionally go above Real Madrid at the top of La Liga.
Suarez crashed in an emphatic overhead kick in the 25th minute after a surging run by Messi then teed up the Argentine to knock in the second three minutes later.
Messi then produced an instinctive volley for the third Barca goal in the 33rd, piling more pain on a Sevilla side who had serious title ambitions little more than a month ago but have fallen apart in recent weeks and failed to win any of their last six games in all competitions.
The Argentine also rattled the bar from outside the box early in the game and his brace took his tally to 29 goals in 30 games against Sevilla in all competitions. Messi also leads the Liga scoring charts with 27 strikes, while Suarez has 24.
"It was the first-half performance we had dreamed of," said Barca coach Luis Enrique.
"We took the game to them as much as possible, we had more of the ball, we scored three goals and had a lot of chances, which says a lot when you consider the quality of our opponents. Things changed in the second half but everything was under control."
TALKING POINT - Iniesta back to his best at 700
In a week when 35-year-old tennis miracle worker Roger Federer is being lauded for his powers of recovery, a special mention should go to the energy and class of 32-year-old Andres Iniesta at the heart of the home midfield in his 700th appearance for the Catalan side.
A lot of critics questioned his legs after the 4-0 pummelling by PSG in the Champions League last 16 in February, but he is obviously back to his majestic best with his ability to get about the pitch not in doubt either.
If he can avoid injury between now and the end of the season, great things can happen for this Barca side.
MAN OF THE MATCH - Lionel Messi
What can you say about the man? Forced to miss a match when Barcelona proved they can live without him in the 4-1 win at Granada, he returns to prove they can't live without him. The skill levels are obviously exceptional, but he is only special because there is an end product. His two finishes were items of typical beauty with Barca genuinely re-energised in their quest for a Liga and Champions League double.
Read the full article on eurosport.co.uk: Magical Messi slays Sevilla to boost Barca title hopes