Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates a goal against Real Madrid during La Liga's second 'classic' soccer match of the season at Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid March 23, 2014. (REUTERS/Sergio Perez)
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Lionel Messi blew the La Liga title race wide open when the Argentina forward netted a hat-trick in a 4-3 comeback win for the champions at 10-man Real Madrid in an action-packed "Clasico" Sunday.Chasing a fifth title in six years, defeat for Barca at Real's Bernabeu Stadium in a match watched by millions around the world would have all-but killed off their challenge but they came out swinging and took a seventh-minute lead through playmaker Andres Iniesta.Real, looking to restore their three-point lead at the top and undefeated in 31 matches in all competitions, were reeling but hit back with a Karim Benzema double before Messi's first of the night, a close-range snap shot through a crowd of players to make it 2-2 at the break.
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