A first-half Leo Messi hat-trick proved enough to earn Barça a nervous victory over Valencia at Mestalla tonight. Messi’s goals gave Barça a commanding 0-3 lead in a brilliant opening 41 minutes from Barça but two late first-half strikes from Helder Postiga put Valencia back in the game. After the explosive end to the first half neither side could find the net in the second period. There were chances for both sides with the closest attempt coming in the 86th minute when Victor Valdés got his fingertips to Jonas Gonçalves’s shot before the ball bounced out off the post.
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