Barca's Messi too much for PSV

November 29, 2018
Barcelona forward Lionel Messi (right) passes PSV's Pablo Rosario and PSV's Daniel Schwaab (left) during their Group B Champions League match at the Philips Stadium in Eindhoven, Netherlands yesterday.

EINDHOVEN, Netherlands (AP):

Lionel Messi scored one goal and set up another as Barcelona beat PSV Eindhoven 2-1 yesterday to secure top spot in UEFA Champions League Group B with one match left to play.

Barcelona was already qualified for the next round before kicking off at PSV Stadium and was uncharacteristically scrappy at times until a moment of Messi magic finally gave his team the lead in the 61st minute.

The Argentina star scored his 106th Champions League goal after a trademark dribble took him past a group of PSV defenders and gave him time to unleash a powerful shot past Jeroen Zoet.

In the group's other match, Tottenham beat Inter Milan 1-0 at Wembley and those teams will fight for second place in the last round. Tottenham face Barcelona in its last group match, while Inter hosts PSV.

Messi has now scored 10 goals in five Champions League matches against Dutch opponents, including his hat-trick against PSV in their Group B opener this season.

He also turned supplier for Barcelona's second, taking a free kick that Gerard Pique deflected past Zoet.

PSV effectively countered Barcelona's threat for much of the first half and was unlucky not to go into the break at least one goal in front after twice hitting the frame of the goal.

Gaston Pereiro hit the post after 16 minutes and Luuk de Jong saw his looping header rebound off the crossbar shortly before half-time.

Captain Luuk de Jong grabbed a consolation goal for the home fans with an 83rd-minute header to set up a frenetic late assault, but despite pouring forward PSV could not find an equaliser.

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