Luis Suarez struck twice in the second half as Barcelona came from a goal down to beat Inter Milan 2-1 in the teams’ Champions League clash at Camp Nou on Wednesday night.
Inter, who lead Serie A after winning all six domestic games under Conte, produced a wonderful first-half display and took the lead in the second minute through Argentine forward Lautaro Martinez.
The goal rattled Barca and Ernesto Valverde’s side struggled to find spaces against Antonio Conte’s well-drilled defence. Barca had more of the ball, but Inter continued to look dangerous on the break and Martinez could have made it 2-0 later in the half, his touch too heavy when he was one on one with Ter Stegen.
Although Messi had been considered a doubt after sustaining a thigh injury against Villarreal, he came straight into the line-up for his second start of the season and set Suarez up for his 84th-minute decider, as Barca just about did enough to see off the Serie A leaders.
Barca – who were dominated in the first half – took charge after the interval and restored parity through Suarez’s fine volley. The Uruguay striker completed the turnaround six minutes from time with a similarly gorgeous effort after Messi’s wonderful run.
Barca were facing their first home defeat in the Champions League group stage since losing to Rubin Kazan in 2009 but were transformed after coach Ernesto Valverde replaced Sergio Busquets with Arturo Vidal.
Barcelona, who are unbeaten in 33 Champions League home games, are level on four points with Borussia Dortmund, whom they drew 0-0 with in their opening game, at the top of the table. This is for the first time since 2009-10, Inter have not won either of their first two games in the Champions League group stage.
Inter and Slavia have a point apiece, with Barca travelling to Prague next and the Italians at home to Dortmund in the third round of matches later this month.