Messi gets his 500th goal for Barca
Lionel Messi scored his 500th goal for Barcelona as the Catalan club won a thriller against Sevilla on Sunday night.
Reaching that landmark prompted Barcelona to tweet: “Counting official matches and friendlies, Messi reaches the figure of 500 goals for FC Barcelona. Well done Leo!”
Barcelona stayed two points behind Madrid by coming from behind to defeat gritty Sevilla 2-1. Luis Suarez got Barcelona’s winner.
On Sunday, Messi was the difference again, scoring an equaliser with a well-placed shot from outside the area in the 43rd.
Messi is the club’s all-time leading scorer with 469 goals in official matches and 31 in friendlies.
Not content with that milestone, Messi set up Suarez’s winner with a precise pass in the 61st in the back-and-forth game at Sevilla.
Messi and Suarez lead the league in scoring with eight goals each.
Victor “Vitolo” Machin had put Sevilla ahead in a breakaway in the 15th, speeding past a defender after a perfect through ball by midfielder Pablo Sarabia and firing a low shot past goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
It was the fourth straight win for Barcelona, and Sevilla’s first home loss in the league this season.
“It’s a win that strengthens us as a team,” Barcelona coach Luis Enrique said.
Sevilla, which had beaten Atletico Madrid at home earlier this season, was looking for another big victory to establish itself as a top contender after the arrival of Argentine coach Jorge Sampaoli.
Villarreal scored a goal in each half to defeat Betis 2-0 and moved to third place with 22 points, five behind Real Madrid.
Seventh-placed Athletic Bilbao was held to a 0-0 draw at Espanyol for its third straight game without a league win.
Celta Vigo moved to eighth after coming from behind to beat Valencia 2-1 at home. Swedish forward John Guidetti scored Celta’s winner in the 77th.