Robert Lewandowski was on fire as Barcelona cruised to a comfortable 5-1 victory at home in their Champions League opener against Viktoria Plzen on Wednesday, August 7. He bagged a hat-trick on the night and moved ahead of Karim Benzema (86) on the list of UCL top scorers.
As things stand, Lewandowski (89) is only behind Cristiano Ronaldo (140) and Lionel Messi (125) in the scoring charts. It has taken the Pole almost no time to settle in Barcelona colors following his €45 million move in the summer. He has scored eight goals in five matches across competitions and has made Xavi Hernandez’s side a force to be reckoned with.
The former Bayern Munich forward’s technical prowess and decision-making in the final-third have helped Barcelona improve as a collective unit. Lewandowski’s sixth hat-trick in the Champions League consisted of a right-footed finish from the edge of the box and a well-timed header from the back post. His third was a low drilled finish from outside the box.
The other two scorers for Barcelona on the night were Franck Kessie, whose header started the romp on the night, and Ferran Torres, who scored his team’s fifth.
Having seen the Polish international wreak havoc on Plzen, football fans could not help but hail Lewandowski for his immense abilities. This is how some of them reacted on Twitter.
Barcelona manager Xavi suggets he is ‘running out of praise’ for Lewandowski after Champions League hat-trick
The 34-year-old centre-forward became the first player in the history of the Champions League to score a hat-trick for three clubs. He has previously bagged the match ball with former sides Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich. After the game, the Blaugrana boss too hailed the ‘fantastic’ Lewandowski.
He said, via ESPN:
“I am running out of praise for him,” Xavi said after the game. “He’s scored a hat trick, but it’s not just that. It’s how he plays and how he makes the team play, finding the third man, reading the space perfectly, pressing.”
“I am delighted [with him]. He has been a fantastic signing. He gives us so many solutions in attack, he’s a leader, a winner… [just] a fantastic, fantastic signing. I don’t know if he is the best No.9 in the world, but he is the best No. 9 for us. “