MADRID (Sporting Alert) — Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick and Barcelona kept its Spanish La Liga title hopes alive with a 4-3 victory over arch rivals Real Madrid, who were reduced a player, in an exciting El Clasico at Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday night.
Video Highlight: Messi’s Hat-trick Goal
Andres Iniesta blasted home from inside the box to give Barcelona a seventh minute lead after he was played through by Messi.
However, Real Madrid forged ahead through two goals from Karim Benzema, before Messi levelled things up with a fine strike from Messi from close range.
The scores were 2-2 at half-time.
After the break Cristiano Ronaldo gave Real Madrid the lead from the penalty spot, before Messi converted two for himself to send Barcelona home with all three points.
Barcelona: Valdes, Alves, Pique, Mascherano, Jordi Alba, Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Fabregas, Messi, Neymar.
Subs: Pinto, Pedro, Alexis, Adriano, Sergi Roberto, Bartra and Song.
Real Madrid: Lopez, Pepe, Ramos, Ronaldo, Benzema, Bale, Marcelo, Alonso, Carvajal, Modric, Di Maria. Subs: Casillas, Varane, Coentrao, Nacho, Morata, Isco, Illarra.