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Messi nets 500th Barcelona goal in El Clasico encounter

Posted April. 25, 2017 07:19,   

Updated April. 25, 2017 07:26

FC Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has achieved yet another milestone in 118-year history of the Spanish team.

In an away game against FC Real Madrid of the Spanish Primera Liga on Monday, Messi scored two goals to achieve his 500th career goal as a member of FC Barcelona.

Messi scored his first goal that tied the match 1-1 in the 33rd minute before scoring a dramatic finishing goal during extra time in the second half to lead FC Barcelona’s 3-2 win on the day. Messi was hit in the face by an elbow of FC Madrid’s defender Marcelo da Silva Júnior during a showdown to secure the ball in the 19th minute in the first half, and bled heavily in the mouth. However, he continued playing determinedly even by biting gauze in his mouth, and led his team to victory in the match between archrivals. Marcelo lied on the ground as if falling when Messi scored the finisher.

Ranking atop in the league’s overall goal rankings in this season, Messi has now 31 goals, widening the goal difference vis-à-vis his teammate Luis Suarez (30) with 24 goals to seven.

Messi has the most goals (50 goals) in a single season in the Primera Liga. He scored in leagues 343 of the 500 goals he has scored while playing for FC Barcelona. He scored 94 goals in the UEFA Champions League, 43 goals in Copa Del Rey (Spanish King’s Cup), 12 in the Spanish Super Cup, five in the FIFA Club World Cup, and three in the European Super Cup. Messi scored 121, or one fourth of his career 500 goals, after the 31st minute in the second half, displaying his solid performance in the closing part of matches.

FC Barcelona, which has continued its dominance with 110 wins, 59 draws and 97 losses overall in the El Clásico encounters, has outpaced FC Real Madrid in goal points to rise to No. 1. The two teams are tying in score points at 75 each, but FC Barcelona has +62 and FC Real Madrid +48 in terms of goal difference. Real Madrid has played one less game than Barcelona. “Messi is an unprecedented player in soccer history. Barcelona owes a lot to Messi,” Barcelona coach Luis Enrique said.

Jong-Seok Lee wing@donga.com