March 2021
4:21 AM IST
News Headlines
CM flays Rahul''s silence over Cong govt falling in party-ruled states        Kerala has become ''fundamentalists'' own country'' under CPI(M) rule, says Sitharaman        COVID-19 crisis far from over; 3rd wave to be more dangerous: CSIR official        Army cancels recruitment exam after paper leaked        Rahul dubs PM Modi a ''formidable enemy,'' vows to defeat him        ISRO launches DRDO''s satellite Sindhu Netra        On National Science Day, Modi asks citizens to practise Lab to Land mantra        UN Human Rights Office says 18 killed in Myanmar crackdown        FDA authorizes Johnson & Johnson vaccine against Covid-19 for emergency use        ISL: Straight shootout for final playoff berth between Goa and Hyderabad        Comments against judges a disturbing new trend: Ravi Shankar Prasad        Syria airstrikes: President Biden protected US personnel, facilities, says White House        DGCA extends suspension of scheduled international passenger flights till February 28        Rahul launches tirade against Modi, talks about ''connect'' with Tamil Nadu        Fishing hartal hits coastal belt in Kerala        Five assembly polls to begin Mar 27, Bengal to have max 8 phases; counting on May 2        Vijayan claims Rahul shying away from attacking BJP        Kerala to test all returning expats using RT-PCR; 3,671 fresh COVID-19 cases, 14 deaths reported        Gelatin sticks, detonators seized from train passenger in Kerala        Hundreds of Nigerian schoolgirls taken in mass abduction        
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Sports News
Super sub Messi sparks Bar a to 3-2 comeback win at Betis
Barcelona, Feb 8 (AP) Lionel Messi was still celebrating his equalizer after coming off the bench for Barcelona when Sergio Busquets handed him the captain's armband.

Once again, Messi had come to the rescue of his grateful teammates.

Messi showed why Barcelona agreed to keep him an extremely rich man when on Sunday he acted as Ronald Koeman's super sub, scoring one goal and setting up another to help Barcelona earn a 3-2 win at Real Betis.

Youngster Francisco Trinc o shared in the victory by clinching the thriller with his first goal for the club that he scored with three minutes to go.

"In half an hour, Messi demonstrated what a vital player he is for this team," Koeman said.

"Messi has shown for years that he is the best player in the world, above all for the creativity he displays in the final meters."

Barcelona's sixth league win in a row lifted it back into second place at seven points behind Spanish league leader Atl tico Madrid, which has two more games to play. It hosts Celta Vigo on Monday.


Koeman has complained about the number of games his team has played over the last month in the league, Copa del Rey and Spanish Super Cup. He left Messi and first-choice midfielders Frenkie de Jong and Pedri Gonz lez among his reserves on Sunday.

De Jong's rest, however, only lasted 10 minutes before he came on for defender Ronald Ara jo after he twisted his lower left leg.

Manuel Pellegrini's Betis arrived at the match on a nine-game undefeated run across all competitions. It kept the visitors in check in the first half and an inspired Nabil Fekir threatened on the counterattack without Ara jo to anchor Barcelona's defense.

Borja Iglesias slotted in a low cross by Emerson after a quick transition into attack led by Fekir to put Betis ahead in the 38th.

Koeman sent on Pedri at halftime. Messi and Trinc o soon followed.

Betis had already felt the fury of Messi coming off the bench facing a deficit this season.

In November, the last time Messi started a league match from the bench, the six-time Ballon d'Or winner scored twice after going on at halftime to deal Betis a 5-2 defeat.

This time, he needed just two minutes to rifle a left-footed shot inside the post just after Ousmane Dembele drew in two defenders before assisting him inside the area.

Messi sparked a second goal in the 68th with an exchange of passes with Jordi Alba that left the left back clear to square the ball across the goalmouth. Antoine Griezmann scuffed a point-blank shot, but was fortunate that the ball hit Betis defender V ctor Ruiz and bounced in.

Ruiz made up for his error in the 75th when he rose to head in a free kick from lFekir.

But with Barcelona facing a setback in the title race, substitute Trinc o recovered a ball from Ruiz and fired a long strike off the goalframe and into the net for the 87th-minute winner.

The victory in Seville was a second-straight comeback win for Koeman's side. On Wednesday, Barcelona was trailing Granada 2-0 in the Copal del Rey quarterfinals until the final minutes before its late rally forced added time, where it completed a 5-3 victory.

After struggling early in the season with Koeman carrying out a revival of the team with young newcomers like the 21-year-old Trinc o, Barcelona has vastly improved in recent weeks. Its peak physical condition has proven key to winning nine in a row away from Camp Nou between the league and cup.

"I think the team is more confident at this moment, and we always try, even when losing, to play football and to have the patience to win the game at the end," Koeman said.

"And with that our confidence has been growing."


Aleksander Isak and Mikel Oyarzabal scored two goals each to help sixth-place Real Sociedad ease to a a 4-1 win over 10-man C diz.

Oyarzabal converted a penalty after lvaro Negredo handled the ball. The Spain forward added a second before C diz defender Marcos Mauro was shown a direct red card for fouling a player with only the goalkeeper to beat just before halftime.

Isak scored his goals to make it 4-0 before David Silva went on as a substitute for his first appearance since December after recovering from a muscle injury.

Jairo Izquierdo got C diz's consolation goal.


Valencia defender Gabriel Paulista headed in a second-half equalizer to draw 1-1 at Athletic Bilbao, which had gone ahead from an own-goal by Hugo Guillam n.

Bilbao coach Marcelino Garc a Toral rested several of his regular starters in the match against his former team. Bilbao has only lost twice in nine matches since Marcelino took over.


Ante Budimir scrambled in a ball that had come off the post to give Osasuna a 2-1 win at home over Eibar in a relegation fight. The striker's attempt from close range ricocheted off the upright and his chest before going in.

Osasuna moved out of the drop zone and into 15th place. Eibar was left in 17th.

ISL: Straight shootout for final playoff berth between Goa and Hyderabad
NorthEast United march onto playoffs with best-ever league finish
Axar ''straightens'' England with 11/70, India win 3rd Test, inch closer to WTC final
Ashwin-Axar spin combo and Rohit''s unbeaten fifty hand India early control of pink-ball Test
Pink Ball Test: India face England at Motera, focus on WTC final
ATKMB avoid shock defeat against 10-man Hyderabad
IPL 2021 Auction: Complete list of players in 8 franchises
Australian Open: Djokovic, Osaka reach final
England dance to ''Patel Rap'': Indian spinners demolish visitors by 317 runs to level series 1-1
Ashwin's century, Virat's master class put India in command, Eng 53/3 chasing 482
Our batsmen need to play spin better if they are to do well in T20 WC in India: Misbah
Blow on right hand while batting keeps Pujara away from fielding in England's innings
Messi nets 2 in record-tying 505th Liga match, Atl tico win
Rohit slams 161, India finish Day 1 on 300/6
Kohli''s India seek redemption on rank turner; Axar, Kuldeep set for game time
Late Santana show puts SC East Bengal on the brink
Nepal bans three Indian climbers for six years for faking Mt Everest summit
Sports Ministry wants to start vaccination for Oly-bound athletes from March end
A look at what quarantine is like in Olympic-host Japan
Tsegay sets new world indoor record in 1,500m
Kerala has become ''fundamentalists'' own country'' under CPI(M) rule, says Sitharaman
 Tripunithura(Ker): Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Sunday attacked the Kerala''s CPI(M)  
COVID-19 crisis far from over; 3rd wave to be more dangerous: CSIR official
Fishing hartal hits coastal belt in Kerala
Vijayan claims Rahul shying away from attacking BJP
UN Human Rights Office says 18 killed in Myanmar crackdown
 Yangon: Security forces in Myanmar opened fire and made mass arrests Sunday as they sought to break
FDA authorizes Johnson & Johnson vaccine against Covid-19 for emergency use
Syria airstrikes: President Biden protected US personnel, facilities, says White House
Hundreds of Nigerian schoolgirls taken in mass abduction
Army cancels recruitment exam after paper leaked
 New Delhi: The Army has cancelled an examination for pan-India recruitment of general duty personnel
Rahul dubs PM Modi a ''formidable enemy,'' vows to defeat him
ISRO launches DRDO''s satellite Sindhu Netra
On National Science Day, Modi asks citizens to practise Lab to Land mantra
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