Lionel Messi stars in return but Marc-Andre ter Stegen's error costs Barcelona vs. Betis
Real Betis edged out Barcelona in a seven-goal thriller as they became the first team to win at Camp Nou in La Liga since Alaves over two years ago.
Junior Firpo and Joaquin helped Betis into a 2-0 lead at the break but a Lionel Messi penalty dragged the league leaders back into the game.
A rare error from Marc-Andre ter Stegen allowed Giovani Lo Celso to restore Betis' two-goal cushion before Arturo Vidal moved Barca back within one.
Sergio Canales wrapped up the three points for Betis in the 83rd minute after Ivan Rakitic had been sent off, with Messi adding a late consolation as Betis recorded a memorable win in Catalonia.
Messi made his return from a three-week injury layoff and was by far the best Barca player on the pitch. Vidal's second-half cameo may also be seen as a positive, while academy graduate Carles Alena did OK off the bench, too.
Just as they looked to have strengthened their grip on top spot, Barca let it go again. A run of three-straight league wins came to an end as they were beaten at home in La Liga for the first time since September 2016.
The biggest concern is in defence. They've been unable to keep a clean sheet in their last 10 league games, dating back to August, and conceded four at Camp Nou for the first time since 2003. In total, they've now leaked 18 goals this season -- more than 14 of La Liga's 20 teams.
Manager rating out of 10
4 -- Ernesto Valverde was out-coached by his opposite number, Quique Setien, the man many believe plays the type of attractive football which should see him given a chance at Camp Nou one day. Barca were far too open, with Betis pouring through at ease, and Valverde was unable to put a lid on things.
Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)
GK Marc-Andre ter Stegen, 5 -- Once again made some important saves but his performance will be remembered for his weak wrists. A costly mistake allowed Betis to make it 3-1 at a moment when it looked like Barca could get something from the game.
DF Sergi Roberto, 5 -- Exposed in defence. Failed to deal with Junior one-on-one for the first goal and at times it felt like Betis were targeting Barca's right side.
DF Gerard Pique, 5 -- It's difficult to know how much blame lies with the defenders, given how little protection they appeared to have at times. They were nowhere near Joaquin, though, for Betis' second, for example.
DF Clement Lenglet, 5 -- As with Pique, faced a difficult task given the number of bodies the visitors threw forward. At times Barca were outnumbered at the back. Almost scored in the first half and is becoming a threat from set pieces.
DF Jordi Alba, 6 -- Was up against it in defence but still bombed forward, winning the penalty which got Barca back in the game.
MF Sergio Busquets, 5 -- Not his finest display. There was acres of space at times between him and the back four. Was taken off for Alena as Barca looked for a way into the game.
MF Ivan Rakitic, 4 -- A rash challenge at 3-2 saw him pick up his second yellow and leave Barca with 10 men. It was far from certain that Betis would go on and score. Maybe he should have ducked the tackle and stayed on the pitch.
MF Arthur, 5 -- Perhaps his toughest game since becoming a regular in the side. Struggled under the Betis press and was replaced at half-time.
FW Lionel Messi, 8 -- Barca's best player by a mile on his return from injury. His ball for Alba led to the penalty, which he converted, and he was also pivotal in the build-up to Vidal's goal. Scored his second of the game in stoppage time and was pretty much his side's only threat.
FW Luis Suarez, 5 -- Having done so well in Messi's absence, he was off the boil with the Argentine back by his side. Barca will hope that's nothing more than a coincidence.
FW Malcom, 5 -- Started brightly but disappeared as the game progressed on his first La Liga start. Needs a run of games to really find himself at Barcelona.
MF Arturo Vidal, 7 -- Offered more bite off the bench in midfield and contributed in the final third. Scored Barca's second and set up their third.
FW Munir El Haddadi, 6 -- Nominally invisible after replacing Malcom but did set up Vidal's goal -- thanks to Messi's wonderful through ball.
MF Carles Alena, 6 -- Did well in his brief cameo, flashing a shot wide. Looks to be in favour at the moment -- ahead of Denis Suarez and Rafinha -- and deserves more minutes.