Lionel Messi is absolutely smashing it this season, but hey, what’s new?
The Barcelona maestro notched his 600th career goal for club and country at the weekend, sinking Atletico Madrid with a show-stopping free-kick that secured a valuable 1-0 win for the Catalan club.
In fact, the story of Barca’s La Liga season is all about Messi, as he dominates the Spanish top-flight’s statistics in every attacking ranking, including goals, assists, shots and dribbles.
All that, despite the fact that he’s been playing in a slightly different position this season.
That’s right, under Ernesto Valverde guide, the Argentinian has been positioned slightly further back than in the past, so he can receive the ball from deep and create play. And the change certainly hasn’t harmed his eye for goal.
Speaking after the win over Atleti, Messi said: “In the last year, I might have moved my position backwards a little bit more and come from behind, unlike other years that I was more up front.
“It is true that I’ve done that, but always with the idea of continuing to score goals.”
He’s not wrong, as he’s notched 24 goals in the league this season, which is more than his teammate Luis Suarez (20) and Celta Vigo’s Iago Aspas (16).
His haul this season has included four braces, a hat-trick and even a four-goal rout.
Up against Chelsea in their Champions League last 16 first-leg clash at Stamford Bridge, striker Luis Suarez admitted afterwards that Messi’s decision to drop into a deep position and pull the strings changed the outcome of the game.
The Blues went ahead through Willian as Barca failed to breakdown their defence, before Messi hit the equaliser on the 75th minute.
The former Liverpool forward said: “In these kind of games you have to be smart.
“Leo could not create many situations of danger being close to me so he threw himself backwards to look for these type of situations.”
That’s why they call him the best, I guess.
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