MADRID (AP) — Memphis Depay continued his good run with Barcelona, scoring the winner in a 2-1 victory over Getafe in the Spanish league on Sunday.
It was Depay’s second league goal for Barcelona, which has won two of its first three matches in its first season without Lionel Messi in nearly two decades.
Messi was expected to make his debut with Paris Saint-Germain later Sunday after the Catalan club failed to give him a new contract because of its financial struggles.
Depay, Barcelona’s biggest offseason signing, had also scored in the team’s 1-1 draw at Athletic Bilbao last weekend. He found the net Sunday after a neat move in front of a defender inside the area, sending a low shot inside the near post in the 30th minute.
Sergi Roberto had opened the scoring two minutes into the match at the Camp Nou Stadium after a cross by Jordi Alba.
“We were coming off a draw so we needed the win no matter what ahead of the international break,” said Roberto, who had also scored in Barcelona’s 4-2 win against Real Sociedad in the opener. “It was a difficult match but we came through with the victory.”
Getafe, which has lost three straight to start the league, equalized with a shot from Sandro Ramírez in the 18th. It was Getafe’s first league goal of the season.
“It’s been a tough start to the season for us but we have to keep working hard to try to recover,” said Ramírez, a former Barcelona player.
Barcelona forward Martin Braithwaite, who scored twice in the opener against Sociedad, had a goal disallowed for offside near the end of the match.
Depay nearly added his second from close range in the 85th, but sent the ball over the crossbar.
More than 26,000 fans were allowed at the Camp Nou.
Barcelona was without veteran defender Gerard Piqué because of a muscle injury.
The Catalan club has seven points, the same as rival Real Madrid which won 1-0 at Real Betis on Saturday. Sevilla, Valencia and Mallorca also have seven points.
Defending champion Atlético Madrid can become the only team with three straight victories to start the league if it defeats Villarreal at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium later Sunday.
Sevilla also entered the weekend with two wins but was held to a 1-1 draw at Elche on Saturday.