Levante stun Barcelona 3-1 after Messi scores opener

AP , Saturday 2 Nov 2019

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi reacts to Levante's goals during the Spanish League football match between Levante UD and FC Barcelona at the Ciutat de Valencia stadium in Valencia, on November 2, 2019. (Photo: AFP)

Levante roared back from Lionel Messi's opening goal to shock Barcelona 3-1 in the Spanish league on Saturday.

Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, and Sevilla can all move past Barcelona if they win later Saturday. Granada can also jump ahead of the defending champions on Sunday. Barcelona has a postponed game in hand against Madrid that has been moved to Dec. 18.

Barcelona appeared to be in charge after Messi converted a spot kick in the 38th minute after Nelson Semedo was tripped by Jorge Miramon in the box. The goal extended Messi's scoring run to five consecutive games.

But Barcelona lost striker Luis Suarez to a right leg injury before halftime and started the second half sluggishly. They conceded three times in eight minutes.

Levante's first two goals both came after Barcelona made long passes from its area that were picked off by the host, which with one pass was already in striking position.

Jose Campana equalized in the 61st when he fired home from a short pass laid off my Borja Mayoral. Mayoral put Levante ahead two minutes later with a curling shot from the top of the area. Nemanja Radoja added a third in the 68th after the ball reached him on the edge of the area following a free kick.

Levante moved into eighth place.

Barcelona said Suarez hurt his soleus muscle in his right leg. He walked off when substituted.

The loss ended Barcelona's seven-game winning streak.

Barcelona hosts Slavia Prague in the Champions League on Tuesday.

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