Magical Messi reaches LaLiga landmark to match Henry feat
Lionel Messi set up Arturo Vidal for a classy Barcelona opener at Real Valladolid, taking him to 20 assists in LaLiga this season.
Lionel Messi’s clever pass to set up Barcelona’s opening goal against Real Valladolid on Saturday saw him reach a notable double in LaLiga.
Arturo Vidal was the beneficiary of Messi’s short ball from the edge of the penalty area, with the Chilean sending a low shot in off the left post to nudge Barcelona 1-0 ahead.
Messi 20 and 20
It means Messi has achieved the stunning feat of both scoring and creating 20-plus goals in the Spanish top flight this season, having already netted 22 times prior to the trip to Valladolid.
No other player has ever achieved the individual double during a single campaign in Spain in the 21st century, while the only other to do so in Europe’s top five leagues is Thierry Henry, who managed 24 goals and 20 assists for Arsenal in 2002-03.
Messi is also the first in LaLiga to register 20 assists in a season since former team-mate Xavi in the 2008-09 campaign, when Barça won the league, Copa del Rey and Champions League under Pep Guardiola.
Although Messi’s strike rate this season has not yet reached the heights of recent times, the 33-year-old has managed a combined haul of 40 or more goals and assists in LaLiga for a sixth successive campaign
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