BARCELONA: Lionel Messi praised Spartak Moscow after his late double steered Barcelona to a 3-2 win over the Russian club in their Champions League group stage opener at Nou Camp this morning.
Cristian Tello had made it 1-0 early on in the match, before a Dani Alves own goal levelled the scoreline at the break.
Spartak then took a 2-1 lead in the 60th minute courtesy of a well-taken finish from Brazilian midfielder Romulo, but Messi's second half contribution proved decisive as he scored twice to win the game.
"It's not easy to win a game like that when the other team sit back and defend," Messi told Uefa.com
"They have very fast forwards and played well on the counter-attack."
Messi also expressed his sadness at the injury centerback Gerard Pique picked up in the 12th minute.
"It's a shame about Pique's injury. He is important for us, just like Carles Puyol is, but we have plenty of players in the squad, plus the reserves," he said.
Pique himself sent a message on Twitter following the final whistle, displaying his happiness at the result, and saying his injury was not as serious as first feared.
He said: "Great comeback from the team! It's really important to start winning! Thanks to all of you for the support. I hope to be playing again soon."
Barcelona sit top of Group G following their win, as Celtic drew 0-0 with Benfica in the other group game.