Messi treble helps Barca kick off CL with 7-0 rout of Celtic

Johannesburg [South Africa], Sept 14 : Lionel Messi hogged the limelight with an excellent hat trick as Barcelona kicked off their Champions League campaign in a resounding fashion, thrashing Celtic 7-0 in the opening game of the European competition at Camp Nou.

The emphatic victory saw Barca surpass their biggest win in the Champions League to date, a 7-1 defeat of Bayer Leverkusen in 2012, Sport24 reported.

With the hat trick, the Argentine talisman has extended his goal scoring tally to 86 in Europe's top-tier competition.

On the other hand, Neymar magnificently played the role of a playmaker, setting up his Argentine teammate to score twice in the first half before scoring from a free kick just after halftime.

The Brazilian star then provided a cross for substitute Andres Iniesta, who fired a vicious volley to increase the lead.

Subsequently, Barca completed the rout of the Scottish visitors with a pair of goals from Luis Suarez.

Source: ANI