Messi at the double as Barca win

A Lionel Messi double and a solitary strike from Alex Song saw Barcelona run out 3-1 winners against Real Zaragoza.

Tito Vilanova's men were looking to maintain their unbeaten League record so far, and did so by welcoming back inspirational captain Carles Puyol to the starting line-up.

With an expectant Camp Nou crowd cheering them on, it came as no surprise to see the Blaugrana dominate possession early on. Xavi and Andres Iniesta were their usual, metronomic selves, but it was the full-back Jordi Alba who set up the opening chance.

The former Valencia man cut the ball back for Messi, but the Argentine international could only fire wide from close-range.

The two of them combined again however, on 16 minutes, but this time Messi dispatched his effort from inside the area past Roberto to open the scoring.

Manolo Jimenez's team weren't making it completely comfortable for the home side though. They were allowed a lot of space out wide, and eventually equalised midway through the half.

Martin Montoya only half-cleared Apono's corner, which saw Montanes capitalise on the loose ball and smash home from 18 yards out.

Just four minutes later however, Barca were back in front. Messi's cut-back found Song on the penalty spot, and he hit a first time shot through a forest of legs and in for his debut goal.

After the break, the visitors remained defensively sound, and coped well with the attacking surges of the Catalan club.

The resistance didn’t last though, as on the hour, Montoya played a square ball to Messi on the edge of the box and the record-breaking striker curled a delightful effort into the far corner.

Iniesta hit the post late on, and Helder Postiga saw a good header go over the bar – but neither side really created any clear-cut goalcoring opportunities and Barcelona held out for a deserved 3-1 win.

Barcelona 3-1 Real Zaragoza

Scorers: Messi 16, 60 (B), Song 28 (B); Montanes 24 (RZ)

Barcelona: Valdes; Montoya, Pique, Puyol (Bartra 75), Alba; Xavi, Iniesta, Song; Pedro (Fabregas 78), Villa (Tello 65), Messi

Real Zaragoza: Roberto; Goni, Alvaro, Pinter, Paredes; Apono, Movilla, Zuculini (Wilchez 58); Victor (Postiga 73), Aranda, Montanes

Tags Messi Song