La Liga: 24th La Liga title for Barcelona, 40th goal for Suarez
Granada: Barcelona clinched their 24th Primera Division title as top scorer Luis Suarez scored a hat-trick to inspire them to a 3-0 win at Granada on Saturday.
Barcelona’s Luis Suarez celebrates scoring his team’s second goal during the La Liga match against Granada at Estadio Nuevo Los Carmenes in Granada on Saturday. Pic/Getty Images
Suarez tapped home Jordi Alba’s cutback in the 22nd minute to put Barca in charge and tightened their grip on the game and the title by heading home Dani Alves’ cross in the 38th, before accepting a generous gift by Neymar to complete his treble late on.
A third hat-trick in five games rounded off the Uruguayan’s most prolific season yet as he finished the season with 40 goals in 35 league games and became the first player aside from Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi to land the Primera Division’s top scorer accolade since compatriot Diego Forlan in 2009.
Barca finish the season on 91 points, one ahead of Real Madrid, whose 12-game winning streak at the end of the season ultimately came too late to prevent the Catalans from retaining the title and collecting an eighth league trophy in 12 seasons.
Granada mathematically sealed survival the week before by winning 4-1 at Sevilla.
That was close
The first incident of note arrived in the seventh minute from a well-rehearsed corner when Ivan Rakitic chipped the ball to Javier Mascherano at the near post and he glanced it towards Gerard Pique by the penalty spot. The defender’s header was tipped away by Andres Fernandez, with Barca players wrongly claiming the ball had crossed the line.
Fernandez tipped over a stinging drive by Messi soon after and repelled another Pique header, while Neymar and Andres Iniesta both missed the target.
Barca broke the deadlock midway through the first half through a magnificent sweeping move. Mascherano gave it to Neymar, who then passed to Suarez to tap in at the far post.