Barcelona, SPAIN SOCCER PRIMERA DIVISION.jpg
FC Barcelona's Argentine forward Lionel Messi (R) vies for the ball against Leganes' Unai Lopez (C) during their Spanish Primera Division match at the Butarque stadium in Madrid, Spain, 17 September 2016.
Photograph: EPA/Juan Carlos Hidalgo

Barcelona cruised to the top of the Spanish Liga on Saturday with an emphatic 5-1 romp at Leganes.

Lionel Messi carried on from his hat-trick in Tuesday's 7-0 slaughter of Celtic with two more goals. Luis Suarez, Neymar and Rafinha were Barca's other scorers - all of them South Americans.

"We have really enjoyed ourselves today," said Suarez, who is joint top of the scorers' chart with four goals.

"Everything went right for us - it was a very pleasant match indeed."

Meanwhile, Barca coach Luis Enrique said: "We performed very well today, to be honest.

"We could really have scored more goals because we were so incisive in attack."

Gabriel scored a late consolation goal for Leganes with an exquisite free-kick. The defeat left Leganes - who are in the top flight for the first time ever - in 13th place.

"Barca are a wonderful team. When they play like this there is very little one can do to stop them," Gabriel said.

Barca are level on nine points with Real Madrid but now above The Whites on goal difference, though having played a game more.

Real will visit midtable Espanyol on Sunday, without flu victim Cristiano Ronaldo and also without Gareth Bale, who has a hip injury.

Also on nine points, in third place, are Las Palmas, who edged Malaga 1-0 on an early goal from Momo.

"We are making a very good start to the season. No one expected us to start so brightly, but for us ourselves this is no big surprise, given all the hard work we have put in," Momo said.

In fourth place, on eight points, are resurgent Atletico Madrid, who trounced Sporting Gijon 5-0 at home.

Antoine Griezmann and Fernando Torres led the charge with two goals apiece, Kevin Gameiro was Atletico's other scorer.

"We are now getting into something like a proper rythm," Atletico coach Diego Simeone said.

"The goals are starting to flow at last, and the boys are now playing with less tension and anxiety."

Level on eight points with Atletico are fifth-placed Sevilla, who were held to a disappointing 1-1 draw at Eibar, who are now sixth.

Luciano Vieto gave Sevilla an early lead but then missed two good chances to increase the visitor's lead.

Pedro Leon hit a handsome equalizer for Eibar, who finished with nine men due to red cards for Yoel Rodriguez and Dani Garcia.

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