Barcelona 4-2 Real Sociedad: Barca win first game after Lionel Messi exit

Gerard Pique celebrates
Gerard Pique agreed to take a pay cut so Barcelona could register new signings Memphis Depay, Eric Garcia and Rey Manaj in time for the new season

Barcelona began life without Lionel Messi by beating Real Sociedad in an entertaining La Liga opener.

Gerard Pique opened the scoring for Barca with a powerful header from Memphis Depay’s free-kick.

Martin Braithwaite scored either side of half-time to become the first Danish player to score a La Liga brace.

Real Sociedad pulled it back to 3-2 through Julen Lobete and Mikel Oyarzabal but Sergi Roberto added a fourth for Barcelona in added time.

It was fitting that Barca’s first goal of the season was scored by Pique after the defender agreed to reduce his wagesexternal-link earlier in the week so the club could register three new signings in time for the new season.

Many of the 22,000 Barcelona fans wore Messi shirts to the Nou Camp and chanted for their record goalscorer in the 10th minute after he joined Paris St-Germain on a two-year deal earlier in the week.

New signing Sergio Aguero, who has been ruled out for 10 weeks with a calf injury, watched from the sidelines.

Elsewhere in La Liga, defending champions Atletico Madrid started the season with a 2-1 win over Celta Vigo, while their city rivals Real Madrid beat Alaves 4-1 in their season opener on Saturday.



Formation 4-3-3

  • 13Murara Neto
  • 2DestSubstituted forLeite de Souza Juniorat 71′minutes
  • 24GarcíaSubstituted forAraujoat 83′minutes
  • 3Piqué
  • 18Alba
  • 21de JongSubstituted forRobertoat 71′minutes
  • 5BusquetsBooked at 57minsSubstituted forGonzález Iglesiasat 83′minutesBooked at 84mins
  • 16González López
  • 7Griezmann
  • 9DepaySubstituted forLengletat 90′minutes
  • 12Braithwaite


  • 4Araujo
  • 6Puig Martí
  • 14Manaj
  • 15Lenglet
  • 20Roberto
  • 22Leite de Souza Junior
  • 26Peña Sotorres
  • 27Demir
  • 28González Iglesias
  • 30Paez Gaviria
  • 31Balde
  • 36Tenas

Real Sociedad

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Remiro Gargallo
  • 2ZalduaSubstituted forGorosabelat 66′minutes
  • 6ElustondoBooked at 61minsSubstituted forPachecoat 81′minutes
  • 24Le NormandBooked at 78mins
  • 12MuñozBooked at 62mins
  • 8Merino
  • 3ZubimendiBooked at 37mins
  • 11JanuzajSubstituted forBarrenetxeaat 45′minutes
  • 21SilvaSubstituted forBautistaat 45′minutes
  • 10Oyarzabal
  • 7Portugués ManzaneraSubstituted forLobeteat 66′minutes


  • 4Illarramendi
  • 16Guevara
  • 18Gorosabel
  • 22Barrenetxea
  • 25Bautista
  • 26Pacheco
  • 27Turrientes
  • 29Navarro
  • 34Ayesa
  • 35Lobete

Alejandro José Hernández Hernández


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