Madrid (The Hawk): In order to bounce back from their loss to Real Madrid on Sunday, FC Barcelona defeated Villarreal 3-0 at home on Thursday night. Three goals were scored in the span of eight minutes.
Robert Lewandowski gave Barca a 2-0 lead in the 30th and 34th minutes, and Ansu Fati sealed the victory in the 38th minute after Ferran Torres had struck the crossbar.
Xinhua says that Lewandowski's second goal was a calculated shot into the far corner of the Villarreal goal while his first goal had him controlling a feed from Jordi Alba before scoring.
Torres, Gavi, and Fati were all inserted into the starting lineup by Barca coach Xavi Hernandez, while Sergio Busquets and Eric Garcia were among those who were moved to the bench. Marcos Alonso played in centre defence.
The home team initially had possession of the ball, and Fati forced Villarreal goalkeeper Geronimo Rulli to make a save. However, Villarreal also threatened on the break, and Jackson Martinez and then Arnaut Danjuma gave the home crowd some pause.
The next game for Barcelona is against Athletic Bilbao on Sunday.
In the other games on Thursday, Almeria held on to defeat Girona 3-2 at home despite a comeback in the second half.
As goals from Leo Baptistao, El Bilal Toure, and Adrian Embarba in the first half, Almeria appeared to be winning easily. However, they were forced to hang on after Rodrigo Riquelme drew a goal back in the 47th minute and Cristhian Stuani converted a penalty with seven minutes remaining.
Girona believed it had stolen a point in stoppage time, but Yangel Herrera's strike in the 96th minute was disallowed for offside.
Other results included Osasuna defeating Espanyol 1-0 at home to snap a three-game losing streak thanks to a 55th-minute header from Ante Budimir.
(Inputs from Agencies)