Suarez, Messi earn 8/10 as Barcelona fight back to defeat Inter at Camp Nou

BARCELONA -- Luis Suarez scored twice as Barcelona fought back from a goal down to beat Inter Milan 2-1 in the Champions League on Wednesday at Camp Nou.

Antonio Conte's side took a surprise lead when Lautaro Martinez held off Clement Lenglet's challenge to open the scoring after just 121 seconds. However, the Serie A leaders were made to pay for failing to add to their advantage in a brilliant first-half display. Suarez leveled the score in the 58th minute with a fine volley from the edge of the box, and he completed the turnaround with five minutes to play, slotting home after a brilliant run from the returning Lionel Messi.

Barca join Borussia Dortmund at the top of the group with four points from two games, while Inter sit at the bottom with Slavia Prague with just a single point.


Barcelona fans jeered Suarez off the pitch when he was substituted against Villarreal last week. Here, though, he showed why coach Ernesto Valverde is loathe to take him off even when he's not firing. When he's on song there are few better finishers in the game, and both of his efforts against Inter were top notch.

Meanwhile, the big positive came in the form of Messi. He took a while to get out of first, but he finished the game in fifth gear. His assist for Suarez's winner was fantastic. This was just his second start of the season and the first time he has completed 90 minutes following calf and thigh problems. Barca and Valverde need to keep him fit.


The old cliche has rarely been truer: Football is a game of two halves. Barcelona were awful in the first half, although Conte and Inter deserve some credit for that. They've failed to score the first goal in six of their nine outings this season and were lucky to be trailing by only one goal when they trudged back to the tunnel at half-time.

They were torn apart on the break by an Inter side happy to swap possession for counters. Sergio Busquets looked off the pace and all of the back four had moments to forget. The win should not cloud the fact that this is still a Barca side with cracks in it.

Manager rating out of 10

7 -- Valverde was outcoached by Conte in the first half, but his changes swung the game in his side's favour. Swapping Busquets for Arturo Vidal, who was good, and changing to a 4-2-3-1 formation worked wonders.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Marc-Andre ter Stegen, 7 -- The German international's high standards mean he'll probably feel he should have kept the Inter goal out, but he was responsible for keeping the score down in the first 45 minutes. Made one incredible save from a Lautaro header in particular.

DF Sergi Roberto, 6 -- Misplaced a number of passes and failed to contain the threat posed by Antonio Candreva.

DF Gerard Pique, 6 -- Booked again. That's six bookings in nine games this season, leaving him a yellow card away from a ban in both La Liga and the Champions League.

DF Clement Lenglet, 6 -- Held off by Lautaro for Inter's goal but improved in the second half to nullify the threat that the Italians had posed in the first 45 minutes.

DF Nelson Semedo, 6 -- The right-back often looked uncomfortable on the unfamiliar left flank but recovered well to stop Lautaro making it 2-0 in the first half and he even improved in attack once Dembele came on.

MF Sergio Busquets, 5 -- Sloppy in possession and looked like he was running in slow motion when Inter countered. Didn't even make the hour mark.

MF Frenkie de Jong, 7 -- One of Barca's better performers, and looked even more impressive once moved into a midfield two. That said, much more is still expected from the ex-Ajax man.

MF Arthur Melo, 7 -- The Brazilian's splendid season continued. He's much braver on the ball. Almost scored in the first half, latching on to a Messi pass but firing over.

FW Lionel Messi, 8 -- Took a while to warm up on what was his second start of the season but was piping hot by the end of the game. His fingerprints had already been found on most of Barca's best moments when he set up Suarez's winner with a great run. He almost added a third goal himself.

FW Luis Suarez, 8 -- An under-par performance was transformed into a match-winning display thanks to some brilliant finishing. Will have enjoyed silencing a few doubters.

FW Antoine Griezmann, 6 -- Struggled to make an impact on the left despite working hard. Improved when Barca switched to a 4-2-3-1 formation but wasted his best chance, finding the side netting after being fed by Messi.


MF Arturo Vidal, 7 -- The Chilean added energy and fight, helping Barca to take the game to Inter. Hasn't started a match this season, but on this showing, the Blaugrana are better with him in the side.

FW Ousmane Dembele, 6 -- Returned from a thigh problem to frighten Inter's defence with his pace. Was lacking an end product.