Three strikes from the Argentine and a late own goal saw Luis Enrique’s men keep pace with Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid.
Lionel Messi scored a brilliant hat-trick as Barcelona sealed a comfortable 4-0 win over Deportivo on Sunday.
The week leading up to Barca’s visit to the Riazor had been dominated by discussions over Messi’s future following comments he made prior to Monday’s Ballon d’Or ceremony.
Messi fuelled further speculation by stating “I don’t know where I’ll be next year” at the gala in Zurich.
However, the diminutive forward showcased his commitment to Barca with a fine treble in Galicia, going one better than Cristiano Ronaldo – who beat him to the Ballon d’Or – following the Portugal international’s double in Real Madrid’s 3-0 success at Getafe earlier in the day.
The deadlock was broken in the 10th minute by a sublime header from Messi, who then rounded off a free-flowing team move in the 33rd minute.
And Messi’s 30th treble for the club was completed just after the hour mark with a fierce low drive into the bottom-right corner. A Sidnei own goal seven minutes from time made it 4-0.
Victory for Barca keeps the Catalan club one point adrift of leaders Real, while Depor are just a point above the relegation zone. – Goal.com