Robert Lewandowski scores brace as Barcelona beat Real Valladolid 4-0

Robert Lewandowski scores brace as Barcelona beat Real Valladolid 4-0
Jules Kounde made his La Liga debut in Sunday's 4-0 victory against Real Valladolid as Robert Lewandowski extended his impressive start with Barcelona by scoring twice for the second straight game.

At the Camp Nou, young midfielder Pedri added a second goal just before halftime after the Poland star's customary poacher's finish on the quarter-hour mark put Barca on the board.

With a late goal from Sergi Roberto, Lewandowski had now scored four goals in three games since his much-publicized summer transfer from Bayern Munich. Lewandowski scored once more just beyond the hour mark.

Barca jumped up to second on seven points from three matches, two behind Real Betis. Real Madrid will attempt to maintain their perfect start to the season at Espanyol later on Sunday.

Xavi Hernandez handed Kounde his first start after the club was finally able to register the France defender they signed from Sevilla last month for a reported 50 million euros ($49.8 mn).

After a goalless draw on the opening weekend, Barca put four past Real Sociedad last time out, and the Catalans began in similar fashion with Lewandowski going close with an early header.

Lewandowski met an in-swinging delivery from Raphinha, his glancing effort striking the post and rebounding off Valladolid goalkeeper Jordi Masip before tricking along the line to safety.

Pedri then spotted the run of Raphinha in behind but the Brazilian was thwarted by Masip, who was well beaten moments later when Ousmane Dembele’s venomous shot clipped the crossbar.

Barca’s pressure finally told as Raphinha whipped in another teasing cross, sowing confusion in the Valladolid defence which a gambling Lewandowski punished by stabbing home.

A marauding Dembele tested Masip from range, and then created the second for Pedri by rolling a perfectly-weighted ball for the midfielder to bury with a first-time side-foot finish.

Lewandowski all but put the game beyond reach on 64 minutes, running onto a pass from Dembele and cleverly backheeling past Masip with the help of a deflection off Joaquin Fernandez.

Valladolid nearly pulled one back but Marc-Andre ter Stegen saved well from Oscar Plano and Kounde stuck out a leg on the line to keep out the follow-up effort from Roque Mesa.

Ansu Fati forced a sharp stop from Masip after coming off the bench, but Barca grabbed a fourth in stoppage time as Roberto volleyed home after Lewandowski was denied a hat-trick after Masip tipped his shot onto the bar.

Villarreal dropped their first points of the season in a 0-0 draw at Getafe as Unai Emery’s side saw the award of a penalty overturned following a VAR review in the dying stages.
Chima Ugo is a patriotic Nigerian, a journalist, blogger and singer who is so much interested in the internet, journalism, and blogging and have been for half a decade.