Barcelona v Deportivo La Coruña: La Liga – as it happened

Will Unwin on 17 December 2017

Thanks for joining me for tonight’s action from the Nou Camp. It was a bit of a parade for Barcelona in the end but it’s not the first and it won’t be the last.

Full-time: Barcelona 4-0 Deportivo

It was really was a dominant performance from Barcelona, who could have doubled their total if it wasn’t for Messi having an off night in front of goal, as he missed a penalty and a number of other chances. Suarez and Paulinho did superbly well to get themselves into the right places at the right time.

90+1 min: Two minutes for Barcelona to see out. Can they hold on?

90 min: Borja Valle launches a shot from distance which is deflected over the bar.

88 min: Messi sprints down the right to get beyond Schar but the defender recovers well to tackle the Barca man.

85 min: The flag stays down as Suarez runs in on goal after Paulinho plays him through but the Uruguayan fails to complete his hat-trick by thwacking one wide.

83 min: Not much really happening now. Final sub for Depor, though, as Carles Gil departs with Valle coming on.

81 min: Vidal is the latest one to have a chance to make it 5-0 but he volleys the ball over from a Digne cross.

80 min: Messi really is having a terrible night in front of goal, this time he’s played in by Vidal, but despite having space 10 yards from goal he sends it well wide. Digne replaces Alba.

79 min: Lucas Digne is stripped and ready for action. Barcelona just slowly passing it around waiting for the final whistle.

Paulinho really knows how to read a rebound. On this occasion he’s in the right place at the right time as Alba’s shot bounces back off the post and into the Brazilian’s path.

GOAL! Barcelona 4-0 Deportivo (Paulinho, 75)

Another rebound from Paulinho.

73 min: Messi does his best to dribble beyond the entire Depor defence but Juanfran slides in to dispossess him.

Could they beat Jonathan Rea in the Spoty vote?

Here is your shout out.

Messi misses penalty!

The Argentine is repelled by Ruben from the spot. It hit it high but the goalkeeper did really well to get across to stop it.

69 min: Penalty to Barcelona as Suarez is cut down in the box. It was certainly a foul.

68 min: Suarez is sent through on goal but after trying to dummy the goalkeeper he fails to get round him as Ruben dives at his feet to stop him. Great from the Depor man.

67 min: Messi curls the free-kick over the wall and it dips down to hit the base of the post. Then moments later he gets another chance a little closer to go but Messi sends it wide.

66 min: Messi gets a free-kick after being halted by Schar. No second booking for the defender. Now Messi is lining up a shot from 25 yards.

64 min: The medical staff are good in Spain. Paco Alcacer has already been ruled out for three weeks.

62 min: Suarez is down in ‘agony’ after a challenge. Barcelona don’t seem too worried so don’t kick it out. The Uruguayan has survived and is back up. Double change for Deportivo as Colak and Guilherme go off with Valverde and Bakkali coming on.

61 min: Paulinho clips Lucas Perez in some sort of North London flop beef. Nothing comes of the free-kick.

60 min: Depor are having some possession but are really lacking any form of quality in the final third.

56 min: Andres Iniesta has done his bit for the day and is heading off for a rest. Some magic skill and passing tonight from the great man. Now we get to watch Andre Gomes.

55 min: Aston Villa legend Carles Gil cuts in from the right and smashes one on his left but it’s straight into the side netting.

54 min: They’re replaying Suarez’s non-goal from the first-half and it looks like the ball has gone over the line.

53 min: Juanfran sends a cross into the box but he can’t beat Pique who calmly heads it away for a thrown-in, but at least Depor are attacking.

50 min: Depor play themselves into trouble as Schar passes the ball straight to Rakitic, who sends it into Suarez for the Uruguayan to pass to Messi but the Argentine’s shot is blocked.

GOL! Sergi Roberto gets down the right and sends in an inch perfect cross for Suarez to run onto at the back post and tap in from a few yards.

GOAL! Barcelona 3-0 Depotivo (Suarez, 47)

Another tap in for Suarez!

Suarez celebrates scoring his second.
Suarez celebrates scoring his second. Photograph: Javier Soriano/AFP/Getty Images


46 min: Ter Stegen’s mind is still in the dressing room, so he decides to pass the ball 20 yards straight to an opposition player but Depor can’t do anything with it and Barcelona win it back.


Here we go again! How many more will Barcelona get?

Spurs legend

Is there any way back into this for Depor? Probably not no. But Barcelona will score some more, so it’s all good preparation for the big one next week.

Just in: Messi is good at football

The official view on whether Suarez’s shot was over the line from our man in Spain

Elsewhere in’s Antoine Griezmann

I have been working since 7am, so feel free to send in any questions or comments during the break to keep me awake ahead of the second-half.

Half-time: Barcelona 2-0 Deportivo

It’s been pretty much all Barcelona so far, which surprised no one. The Catalans have been pretty slick, to be fair and the goals from Suarez and Paulinho are well deserved.

45 min: Suarez is off celebrating as he thinks he’s rabona’d the ball into the net after he gets to a pass from Messi which was half-cleared. The goalkeeper chucked himself at the ball to save it, but Suarez thinks it went over the line. Shame there’s no technology in Spain.

44 min: Suarez does a lot of shouting at the referee after clipping the heels of a Depor man. The Uruguayan’s self-awareness once again is absent.

GOAL! Rakitic gets the ball into Messi who makes space to shoot from 17 yards across Ruben but his shot hits the post, sadly for Depor it bounces straight into the path of Paulinho who taps home from close range.

GOAL! Barcelona 2-0 Deportivo (Paulinho, 41)

The Brazilian reacts quickest to a rebound.

Paulinho celebrates after scoring the second for Barcelona.
Paulinho celebrates after scoring the second for Barcelona. Photograph: Javier Soriano/AFP/Getty Images


39 min: Messi clips in a free-kick but Depor hold firm and head it clear.

37 min: Barcelona break on Depor as Messi dribbles towards the box where plays a one-two with Suarez before smashing the ball against the bar from 14 yards.

34 min: Suarez smacks the ball into 40 yards of space and wonders why none of his team-mates are stood there waiting for the ball. You are a card, Luis.

32 min: The first booking of the day goes to Schar after he leaves one on Suarez for his own amusement. Not dirty just a little cynical.

31 min: It had been coming for Barcelona in the last few minutes as they camped themselves inside the Depor half. The visitors need to come up with a Plan B now.

Gol gol gol! Iniesta is architect for Barcelona as he lifts the ball over the Depo defence to Messi who runs from deep, allowing him to pass it to Suarez who knocks it into an empty net.

GOAL! Barcelona 1-0 Deportivo (Suarez, 29)

Suarez gets the easy job of tapping it in.

Suarez scores the opener.
Suarez scores the opener. Photograph: Alex Caparros/Getty Images


27 min: Vidal gets on the end of a cross from Suarez but he volleys the ball into the ground, giving Ruben time to react and tip it over. Messi has a shot from the resulting corner but it’s blocked by the goalkeeper.

26 min: Messi picks up the ball 20 yards from goal and does some quality shimmying to get away from a line of Depor defenders before firing one across the goalkeeper but Ruben reacts well to stop it.

24 min: Messi tries to send Suarez through on goal but the Uruguayan cannot control the ball, allowing a Depor defender to sweep up at the back.

23 min: Barcelona were caught cold by the injury to Alcacer so needed a minute or two to find someone warm enough to come on. Valverde plumps for right-back Aleix Vidal.

22 min: It’s an early exit for Alcacer who is hobbling off for Barcelona due to whatever problem he has picked up.

20 min: Alcacer looks like he has done some muscle damage and is on the ground receiving treatment. Is his race run?

18 min: Barcelona are not at their free-flowing best currently, instead mis-placing passes and not being able find a killer pass.

16 min: The Galicians are very well organised currently, making it hard for Barca to break them down. They are even getting some decent possession and could cause some damage with Perez and Gil looking lively.

14 min: Iniesta sends out a lovely pass to Alba on the left wing, allowing the full-back to pull a ball back into the box for Messi but he can only fire in a shot that does not trouble Ruben.

11 min: Depor get a shot on target as the ball falls to Borges on the edge of the box but his shot is very weak and straight at Ter Stegen.

9 min: Guilherme has just shot from about 60 yards. It was rubbish and went wide. Could be a long night for Depor.

8 min: Paulinho flicks the ball into Suarez who plays a superb one-two with Alcacer but Barcelona just can not find a final ball.

6 min: Disallowed! Messi plays in Alcacer in the box, with the Spaniard playing the ball across for Suarez to tap into an empty net but the assistant referee rightly sticks his flag up as Alcacer was in an offside position.

5 min: Paulinho spends a good few seconds trying to go past the referee with the ball but the man in yellow is too big an obstacle and loses possession.

3 min: Suarez and Iniesta combine in the box but when the cross makes its way to Messi 12 yards from goal, via a deflection, the Argentine can’t control his shot and he sends it high and over.

It’s a fair point.

2 min: The early state of affairs is essentially Barcelona passing the ball around slowly and the crowd waiting for something interesting to happen. It will probably get more exciting once the players have warmed up.

Kick off!

Peep! Peep! Now Messi has shown off another award, we’ve got ourselves started.

Now there are more people in the ground. Looks delightfully crisp in Barcelona. The weather is certainly better than in England.

The players are in the tunnel. Oooooooh the Depor kit looks nice. Everyone loves a good sash. If anyone wants to send me the shirt, you know where I am.

Does not look like there are many people at the Nou Camp. Must all be off doing their Christmas shopping or just bored of winning all the time.

Prior to his move to Real Madrid, he was ruddy good, to be fair. But it was a swift demise. Maybe he should have made that move to Manchester City which was on offer.

Thomas Vermaelen should have a statue built in his honour outside the Nou Camp

Depor are a stylish bunch. Let’s hope the Tim Sherwood range is available for Christmas.

Can the 90 minutes at the Nou Camp compete with that? Only time will tell...

The last few minutes of Las Palmas versus Espanyol has been incredible. Las Palmas have scored twice in the last 10 minutes to draw level at 2-2. Now they have a penalty in the fifth minute of injury-time...Viera’s spot-kick is saved!!!

Sune asks: ”How come is ‘El Jefecito’ Mascherano not above Vermalen in the pecking order? I would have thought he ranks high for Barca in terms of loyalty and class for 7 years!”

The reasons are two fold. 1. He’s coming back from injury. 2. He looks set for a move to China next month.

Ernesto Valverde is not looking towards Real Madrid, he’s just focused on getting the three points today.

“What we’re thinking about doing is winning our game [against Deportivo].

“There’s no point worrying about next week’s game before thinking about tomorrow’s game.

“I don’t think that [Real match] has affected the players, they are concerned about tomorrow. So no, by no means whatsoever are we distracted by the Clasico.”

Do not forget that you can contact me via email and that there social media. The details are above. I am happy to discuss all matters pretty kick-off.

Someone who has played against Barcelona and Deportivo is Kaka, who has retired.

In other forgotten former Premier League players news, Thomas Vermaelen is starting for Barcelona who have run out of players to feature in defence. This will be his fourth league appearance in less than a month, which is impressive considering he’s only made 14 in total for Barcelona since joining in 2014.

Wait?! Carles Gil is still an Aston Villa player. Who knew? Tonight, rather than playing in the Championship, he’s starting at the Nou Camp for Deportivo, where he is on loan, which is a far more enjoyable experience than a night at Burton or similar.

Get yourself in the mood for the game by watching better players than Paco Alcacer score some goals against Deportivo.

Busquets is only on the bench for Barcelona as he’s a booking away from suspension and they do not want him to miss the game against Real Madrid.

Barcelona v Deportivo line-ups

Barcelona: Ter Stegen, Sergu Roberto, Pique, Vermaelen, Alba, Rakitic, Paulinho, Iniesta, Messi, Suarez, Alcacer.

Subs: Cillesen, Mascherano, Digne, Busquets, Denis, Gomes, Vidal.

Deportivo: Ruben. Juanfran, Schar, Sidnei, Navarro, Carles Gil, Guilherme, Borges, Adrian, Colak, Lucas

Subs: Tyton, Albentosa, Borja Valle, Mosquera, Fede Valverde, Bakkali, Luisinho.

Referee: Mateu Lahoz


Buenas noches!

Barcelona are top of the league while Deportivo are struggling to keep their heads above water. Next up is El Clásico, so Barca will want to make light work of their lowly opponents. The table-topping Catalans are still unbeaten in the league, not to mention being eight points clear of Real Madrid, who lie in fourth. Javier Mascherano could be heading to China next month, so this could potentially be his final game for the club.

Ernesto Valverde’s side are already behind Real Madrid in terms of trophies won this season following their rival’s Club World Cup triumph on Saturday, but beating Depor might be a greater achievement.

Florin Andone is missing for Deportivo, which is a blow but they will not have expected to enjoy much in the way of attacking at the Nou Camp this evening. Depor are sitting just one place above the relegation zone, so could really do with some points but they are unlikely to get them. The club have recently been linked with Real Madrid legend Iker Casillas who could arrive at the Riazor from Porto in January.


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