Barcelona crowned La Liga champions for 24th time as Suarez scores hat-trick

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Image Courtesy Barcelona Facebook

Barcelona crowned La Liga champions for 24th time as Suarez scores hat-trick

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Debarshee Mitra

05/14/2016

Luis Suarez scored a hat-trick against Granada on Saturday evening to help Barcelona defend their La Liga title in style, finishing with 91 points. Going into the weekend only one point clear of Real Madrid, Barca made easy work of Granada, and were crowned champions for the second year running.

With the last round of matches remaining, the La Liga title remained in the balance with Barcelona and Real Madrid separated by a single point (Barcelona 88, Real Madrid 87). Both teams had to play the last match away from home and thus an upset was still in the offering.

Real Madrid, playing away to Deportivo, drew first blood when Cristiano Ronaldo scored in the 8th minute of the match, giving Real the early initiative. Barcelona meanwhile had a few near-misses in the early exchanges at Granada. But the misses did not seem to perturb the Catalonian club and they took the lead in the 22nd minute of the game via Luis Suarez. The Uruguayan had to apply the simplest of finishes to a beautifully crafted move on the left-hand side by Jordi Alba and Neymar.

The leads doubled in both the games through the same goalscorers. Ronaldo scored with a sweetly taken header in the 25th minute from a Toni Kroos cross, and Luis Suarez was not to stay behind as he scored his 39th Liga goal to put Barcelona two goals to the good. Both Barcelona and Real Madrid headed into half-time 2-0 up and the Liga looked done and dusted there itself.

The second half saw Real Madrid’s intensity drop, well aware of Barcelona’s score, and Zidane withdrew Ronaldo at half-time. Barcelona though were in party mood, having almost sealed the title, and Suarez came close to capping his brilliant performance with a hat-trick. But, his touch betrayed him after being almost through on goal in the 51st minute. However, a few nerves must have frozen when Fran Rico found himself one on one with terStegen, only to see his shot saved by the German.

With the title almost decided, Real Madrid took their foot off the gas and just went through their paces in the second period to win the match 2-0. On the other hand, Luis Suarez added a cherry on the top for Barcelona by claiming his hat-trick four minutes after slotting one into the back of the net from close range. Luis Suarez’s 40-goal season saw him win the Pichichi trophy (highest goalscorer in the La Liga), but most importantly helped Barca retain their crown.  

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