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Barcelona Equal Liga Record With Win

Two late goals from Lionel Messi helped Barcelona secure a 3-0 victory at Hércules and equal a 50-year-old Liga record, set by Real Madrid CF in 1960/61, by sealing their 15th successive league triumph.

Hercules are the only team to have beaten Barca in the league this season, their 2-0 success at the Camp Nou on 11 September being the last time Barcelona failed to win a top-flight game.

History never looked like repeating itself, though. Pedro Rodríguez opened the scoring right before half-time, but it was only after substitute Javier Farinós was sent-off di did Barca take full advantage of the extra man and made the points safe with two goals from Lionel Messi.

Sporting de Gijón were the biggest winners of the day, putting four points between themselves and the relegation zone by beating Mallorca 4-0. Levante, meanwhile, moved off the foot of the table thanks to a 2-0 win against Getafe.

Real Zaragoza joined Sporting on 22 points after a 2-1 win at Málaga, who are now bottom of La Liga, and Real Sociedad are up to ninth following a 2-0 defeat of another struggler, Almería.

In the late game, Deportivo La Coruña surrendered a two-goal lead and then fought back to restore parity in a 3-3 draw with nine-man Sevilla.