Barca rout Roma 6-1
BARCELONA, Spain (AP):
Lionel Messi scored his first two goals after a two-month injury layoff and Luis Suarez netted a brace in a 6-1 rout of Roma yesterday as Barcelona (13 points) advanced to the Champions League knockout rounds for a 12th consecutive season.
Suarez got Barcelona rolling at Camp Nou in the 15th minute. Three minutes later Messi scored his first goal in his second appearance since returning from a left-knee injury.
With Roma in disarray, Messi netted the hosts' fifth after Suarez and Gerard Pique scored. Adriano capped the demolition before Edin Dzeko got Roma's consolation.
Messi showed no rust from his time on the sideline recovering from a ligament he tore on September 26.
Frighteningly enough for opponents, Barcelona's all-time leading scorer said despite his strong return, he has yet to recover his peak form.
"It's tough to get back up to full speed," said Messi. "I prepared well and trained, but it's not the same as going out on the pitch and lasting 90 minutes. I will take it with calm and get my pace back."