Barcelona went top of La Liga after beating Granada 4-0 on Saturday. Lionel Messi bagged a hat-trick and Neymar Jr. added a fourth as the hosts' star-studded front three ran riot at the Camp Nou.
Barca's starting XI included new signings Arda Turan and Aleix Vidal for the first time. Gifted youth Sergi Roberto was also included in a holding role at the base of midfield.
The club's Twitter provided the full lineup:
Granada's official Twitter detailed the starting XI for the team that entered the game just two points above the bottom three:
Diario Sport journalist Samuel Marsden highlighted one precocious prospect who might stand out for the visitors:
Crisp and inventive combination passing between Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar cut Granada's defence to ribbons in the first half. The awesome trio was aided by the mercurial brain of Turan.
He combined with Suarez and Messi to eventually tee up the latter for a very stylish opener. Spanish Football writer Sergi Dominguez applauded the quality of the move:
Dominguez was soon wowed by yet another typically classy and unified effort in attack as Messi doubled his tally and Barca's lead:
It had been a first-half masterclass from Messi, but it wasn't all about his goalscoring. His own creative output was also worthy of plaudits, according to Sid Lowe of the Guardian:
In fact, only wayward finishing from others denied Barca a more commanding lead at the break. Football writer Rik Sharma identified Suarez as a particularly wasteful culprit:
Messi claimed his hat-trick just before the hour mark after Neymar's shot rebounded off the post. Once again, Turan was at the heart of the build-up, using a dummy to help send Neymar clear.
ESPN's Dermot Corrigan noted how impressively the cerebral winger was adapting to his new team-mates:
One more goal was yet another reminder of Messi's significance even in a team littered with so many other awesome stars. The Argentinian forward has made a blistering start to the new calendar year, per OptaJose:
His hat-trick is also a timely fillip ahead of the FIFA Ballon d'Or ceremony.
There was still time for Neymar to add his name to the scoresheet. He benefited from another astute assist from Suarez.
Enrique expressed his willingness to rotate his bigger squad to keep players fresh for the challenges ahead:
On the subject of that looming award ceremony, the Barca gaffer indicated his interest will lie elsewhere:
But he did offer his support for one man who will be there:
Those sentiments were echoed by club president Josep Maria Bartomeu:
A professional performance with some great goals and three points is very welcome for Barcelona boss Luis Enrique. His team has now reclaimed top spot and put the pressure on Atletico Madrid ahead of their tricky away trip to Celta Vigo on Sunday.