Alexis scores hat-trick to take Barcelona atop Spanish League
Barcelona moved back to the top of La Liga on goal difference with a comfortable 4-0 win over Elche yesterday thanks to a hat-trick from Alexis Sanchez.
The Catalans are tied with Atletico Madrid on 49 points with the two set to meet for the first time in the league this season next weekend at the Vicente Calderon.
Lionel Messi was once again watching from the sidelines as he nears a comeback from a hamstring injury and Neymar was left on the bench having recently returned from a Christmas break in Brazil.
However, Sanchez and Pedro Rodriguez once again proved able deputies as they slotted home inside the opening 15 minutes.
Xavi Hernandez missed a second-half penalty for the hosts, after Cristian Sapunaru upended Cesc Fabregas inside the penalty area, but it mattered little as Sanchez rolled home his second goal from Pedro’s pass shortly afterwards.
And the Chilean sealed his first hat-trick for the club with a stunning free-kick 21 minutes from time. Barca now lead Real Madrid by eight points, but Madrid can cut the gap on the leaders to five with victory over Celta Vigo today.