Lionel Messi netted his 50th career hat trick as Barcelona stormed past Sevilla with a 4-2 win at the Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.
The result lifts Barcelona ten points clear of Atletico Madrid, for at least 24 hours, but the result came secondary to the performance of their talismanic skipper.
Sevilla set the early pace, and took the lead on 22 minutes, as Messi lost possession in midfield the home side broke and Yissam Ben Yedder fed Jesus Navas to pen the scoring.
Messi, clearly stung by his error, hauled Barcelona back into the game four minutes later – volleying home left footed on the turn, from Ivan Rakitic's driven cross.
Sevilla hit back just before the break, as Barcelona were caught sleeping at the back, as Pablo Sarabia swept home Gabriel Mercado's cut back from the byline.
Messi hit his second goal of the game on 66 minutes, curling home right footed from 15 yards as Sevilla's defence backed off him following Ousmane Dembele neat pass.
He sealed his hat trick four minutes from time, keeping his cool to chip Thomas Vaclik from close range, after substitute Carles Alena's shot was deflected into his path.
Uruguay international Luis Suarez scored his first La Liga goal for five games in added time, as Messi defence splitting pass put him clean through to lift the ball over Vaclik.