Lionel Messi scored the winner against Levante on Saturday to seal Barcelona’s 26th La Liga title and second on a row at the ‘electrifying’ Camp Nou Stadium. The league trophy marks their eighth crown in the past 11 years. The Argentine striker slotted home the only goal of the match in the 62nd minute following a heading assist from midfielder Arturo Vidal.
Barcelona now have all their focus on the Champions League semifinals first-leg match against Liverpool, who they face on Wednesday at home. The Premier League side are also competing for the title in England against Manchester City and possess a serious threat against the Spanish giants in the Champions League.
Following their title-winning victory head coach, Ernesto Valverde was all praises of skipper Messi, who was substituted on in place of former Liverpool man Phipplipe Coutinho. The Brazilian performed well with several efforts on target but it took Messi about a quarter of an hour to score his 34th league goal of the season.
Valverde was quoted as saying by The Guardian: “Messi was always ready to come on and I always knew he was going to play but we also have a game on Wednesday. He has to stay active and he scores goals everywhere he goes and he has won us this title.”
“It is very difficult to win this title, especially with this margin. We have done it two years in a row and it’s fantastic to see the fans celebrate the title like this at home. Now we want to go and celebrate it.“
Here are the videos and pictures of ‘La Liga Champions’ Barcelona’s celebrations:
At least 91,000 gathered supporters from both clubs had gathered at the Camp Nou stadium but it was the home fans who were jubilant as they sang celebration chants.
“They turned us upside down and I think that was down to nerves. They had a few chances but it was incredible when they hit the post,” Valverde said. “We couldn’t kill the game off and they started to believe while we get more nervous but luckily we were able to see out the win.”
Messi scripted history with the triumph as he became only the third Barcelona player ever to win ten La Liga titles. Along with his teammates, he was also joined by his children in the celebrations and lap of honour.
With two games remaining, Barcelona have an unassailable lead with 83 points after 35 matches played, nine points clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid.