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Messi reclaims hat trick record, Dembele scores marvel in Barca rout

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Lionel Messi scored 75 percent of Barcelona’s goals on Tuesday against PSV Eindhoven, but Ousmane Dembele scored the best one in a 4-1 win at the Camp Nou.

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Messi’s eighth UEFA Champions League hat trick moved him ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo for the most in the history of the competition.

He’s now scored UCL hat tricks against Arsenal (2010), Viktoria Plzen (2011), Bayer Leverkusen (2012), Ajax (2013), APOEL Nicosia (2014), Celtic (2016), and Manchester City (2016).

He also became just the second player to score in 14-straight UCL campaigns (Raul).

But Dembele’s darting dribble and fantastic curling effort is the one that will have eyebrows raised around the world (nothing against Messi’s marvelous goals, which were not low quality at all).

Samuel Umtiti collected his second yellow in the second half and was sent off prior to Messi’s third goal.

La Liga: Dembele rescues Barcelona again; Real Madrid drop points

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A roundup of all of Saturday’s action in Spain’s top flight…

[ MORE: What did we learn today in the Premier League? ]

Real Sociedad 1-2 Barcelona

Ousmane Dembele has a lot to live up to ($120 million, to be more specific), but the 21-year-old Frenchman is beginning to repay Barcelona for the massive transfer fee they paid to acquire his services last summer. Three times this season already, including Saturday’s 2-1 victory over Sociedad, Dembele has scored the game-winning goal to snatch victory from the jaws of a draw. First, he did it in the Spanish Super Cup against Sevilla, before scoring the only goal in Barca’s victory over Real Valladolid last month.

Barca fell behind after Aritz Elustondo’s opener in the 12th minute, an advantage they maintained until after the hour mark. Luis struck in the 63rd, though, and Dembele completed the comeback three minutes later (his fourth goal of the season – all competitions). The victory makes Barca a perfect four-for-four to start the season, and they now lead the rest of the league by at least two points, thanks to results elsewhere on Saturday.

Atletico Bilbao 1-1 Real Madrid

Speaking of results affecting the top of the table, Real Madrid dropped points for the first time this season as they, too, had to overcome a halftime deficit. Iker Muniain put Bilbao ahead in the 32nd minute, but the lead would last only 32 minutes more. Isco got on the end of Gareth Bale‘s cross to the top of the six-yard box and headed home from close range (his first goal of the season).

Elsewhere in La Liga

Atletico Madrid 1-1 Eibar
Valencia 0-0 Real Betis

Sunday’s La Liga schedule

Leganes vs. Villarreal — 6 a.m. ET
Espanyol vs. Levante — 10:15 a.m. ET
Real Valladolid vs. Alaves — 12:30 p.m. ET
Sevilla vs. Getafe — 2:45 p.m. ET

Messi wins record 33rd title as Barcelona lift Super Cup

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TANGIER, Morocco (AP) — Lionel Messi won his 33rd title with Barcelona on Sunday to become the most successful player in the Catalan club’s history.

[ VIDEO: USMNT’s Tim Weah scores first Ligue 1 goal in goofy fashion ]

Barcelona beat Sevilla 2-1 in the Spanish Super Cup as Messi overtook Andres Iniesta, who had 32 titles when he left this summer for the Japanese league.

Ousmane Dembele scored a late winning goal with a blistering strike from outside the area. The 21-year-old France winger stunned Sevilla’s defense with a right-footed shot that hit the underside of the crossbar in the 78th minute.

Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen saved a penalty kick from Sevilla substitute Wissam Ben Yedder in the 89th after Ter Stegen fouled former Barcelona forward Aleix Vidal.

[ MORE: Ronaldo made Juventus fans wait only eight minutes for first goal ]

Pablo Sarabia opened for Sevilla in the ninth, when the video assistant referee overruled an offside call in the first use of VAR in Spanish competition.

Gerard Pique equalized three minutes before halftime when he finished off a free kick by Messi that hit the post and ricocheted off the back of goalkeeper Tomas Vaclik — and again off the upright — before falling to the Barcelona defender.

Former Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal debuted for Barcelona as a late substitute.

[ MORE: Pogba makes eyebrow-raising comments about Man United ]

The Super Cup is played between the previous season’s league and Copa del Rey winners. Since Barcelona won both competitions, Sevilla played the match as the Copa runners-up after losing 5-0 in last season’s cup final to Barcelona.

Played in Tangier, Morocco, this was the first Spanish Super Cup held outside Spain and the first time it was played as a single match, instead of a two-leg series.

Transfer rumor roundup: Hegazy linked with two PL clubs; Dembele to Arsenal

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With a long-term injury befalling Florian Lejeune, Rafa Benitez and Newcastle may look to add to its Midlands shopping list.

Already expected to swoop for center forward Salomon Rondon of West Brom, Benitez is eyeing up $12 million Baggies center back Ahmed Hegazy.

[ MORE: Zlatan suspended ]

The Egyptian was one of West Brom’s top performers despite making his Premier League debut in August. Brighton is also being linked with Hegazy.

Newcastle has signed Fabian Schar this summer, who will join Jamaal Lascelles and Ciaran Clark in Newcastle’s CB corps.

The Magpies are also linked with Club Brugge winger Anthony Limbombe, who was capped by Roberto Martinez. They’ll only be bringing him to town should they sanction the deal of Christian Atsu, who is being linked with Huddersfield Town.


Peak silly season here: Rumors that Arsenal may be able to land Ousmane Dembele from Barcelona have a wild other side of the deal.

A report claims that Unai Emery could land the winger he wanted at PSG from Barcelona if he sanctions the departure of Welsh midfielder Aaron Ramsey.

Yeah, that’s not going to happen.

Ramsey is a pivotal piece of Emery’s Arsenal project and when healthy is one of the top center midfielders in the Premier League.

That’s not to say Dembele isn’t a prospect with the same weight, but why Emery would give Ramsey away to make such a deal is a head-scratcher.

Barcelona jets in for a day to beat South African champs

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JOHANNESBURG (AP) Ousmane Dembele, Luis Suarez and Andre Gomes scored as Barcelona beat South Africa’s Mamelodi Sundowns 3-1 on Wednesday in a friendly marking 100 years since the birth of Nelson Mandela.

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Lionel Messi didn’t start the game at FNB Stadium in Johannesburg but drew a roar from the crowd as big as any other on the night when he got up off the bench and started to warm up 20 minutes into the second half. He came on for the last 15 minutes. Andres Iniesta did start in his return to the stadium where he won the World Cup for Spain in 2010.

Dembele, Suarez and Gomes all took advantage of defensive errors, with Dembele curling a left-foot shot into net in the third minute and Suarez doubling the lead in the 18th minute. Gomes added the third in the 66th.

Sibusiso Vilakazi scored Sundowns’ goal late on but the Spanish champions were in cruise control against the South African league winner. Barcelona returns home to play its last game of the Spanish season on Sunday against Real Sociedad, Iniesta’s farewell match after 22 years at Barcelona.