Barcelona: Víctor Valdés; Puyol
(Víctor Sánchez 91'), Piqué, Márquez, Sylvinho;
Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Iniesta (Gudjohnsen 86'); Messi, Eto'o, Henry. 4-3-3.
Athletic:Gorka Iraizoz; Iraola, Amorebieta, Gurpegui, Koikili; Orbaiz (Muñoz 74'), Javi Martínez (Toquero 46'); Susaeta, Yeste, Gabilondo; Llorente (Garmendia 59'). 4-2-3-1.
Team changes: Barcelona: Piqué, Sergio Busquets, Iniesta for Daniel Alves, Touré Yaya, Gudjohnsen / Athletic: Gorka Iraizoz, Iraola, Koikili, Orbaiz, Javi Martínez, Yeste, Llorente for Armando, Ustaritz, Etxeita, Balenziaga, Muñoz, Ion Vélez, Toquero.
1-0. 17. Busquets. Guided header wide of Iraizoz from Xavi's wide free kick.
2-0. 31. Messi (penalty). After Iniesta tripped by Gurpegui inside penalty area.
Yellow cards: Javi Martínez 24', Orbaiz 47', Eto'o 51', Iniesta 59', Amorebieta 60', Busquets 70', Toquero 86'.
Barcelona's lead at the top of the table is back up to six points after a 2-0 win over Athletic Bilbao. Both sides qualified for the final of the Copa del Rey midweek, and this match served as a trial run for May's meeting in Valencia.
Yeste missed an early chance before Sergio Busquets headed the hosts in to the lead from Xavi's free kick with just over a quarter of an hour gone. And Messi got the second from the penalty spot later in the first half after Gurpegui brought down Iniesta.
It could have been more though, Iniesta hitting the post soon after the restart and Eto'o testing Iraizoz a couple of times and hitting the woodwork himself twice more. But the biggest cheers in the Nou Camp were for the news from the Bernabeu, where Real Madrid had dropped two points to neighbours Atlético, and fans breathed a sigh of relief after a first win in six games.