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Serie A

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By ESPN Staff

Kanoute hits a double

Sevilla claimed first-leg honours against Primera Division champions Barcelona as they fought back from a goal down to win 3-1 in the Supercopa.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic put Barcelona ahead, but Luis Fabiano levelled and substitute Frederic Kanoute scored twice to give Sevilla a commanding lead ahead of next week's Nou Camp clash.

Ibrahimovic gave visitors Barcelona the lead after 20 minutes when he received a pass from Maxwell and shrugged off the attentions of two defenders before firing beyond Andres Palop.

The Swedish striker has been frequently linked with a move away from Barcelona, and speculation persists that he will not be with the club on September 1.

However Barcelona were worthy leaders with him on the pitch tonight, and it was only when he departed, replaced by Lionel Messi, that Sevilla began to play.

Messi was not to blame for Sevilla taking control though. Barcelona's line-up had been weakened by the absence of their Spanish World Cup stars, who were allowed to rest, and Pep Guardiola included four players from the club's B team.

It was inevitable they would not be able to play at a high level for the full match, and another striker who could be leaving his current club, Luis Fabiano, hauled Sevilla level in the 61st minute.

The Brazilian, coveted by Marseille, was put in by Luca Cigarini and smashed a low shot past Mino in Barcelona's goal.

Kanoute came off the bench three minutes later and converted a pass from fellow substitute Alvaro Negredo in the 72nd minute, and then the Malian headed in Sevilla's third goal in the 82nd minute from a cross by Diego Perotti.

The teams meet again next Saturday evening, at the Nou Camp, when Guardiola is expected to include the stars of Spain's World Cup triumph in an effort to turn the Supercopa around.


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