Messi Scores Barca’s 6,000th La Liga Goal

Messi Scores Barca’s 6,000th La Liga GoalMessi Scores Barca’s 6,000th La Liga Goal

Two goals from Lionel Messi either side of a Philippe Coutinho strike allowed Barcelona to start its defense of the Spanish title with a 3-0 win over Alaves at the Camp Nou on Saturday.

Wearing the captain’s armband, following the departure of Andres Iniesta to Japan, Messi stepped up to send a cheeky second-half free-kick under the jumping wall and into the net for the opener, and Barca’s 6,000th La Liga goal, AFP reported.

Coutinho, who had come off the bench, lashed in the second goal before Messi added gloss to the scoreline in stoppage time, with the clock having ticked past midnight in Catalonia.

Messi, 31, will be aiming to put behind him the desperate disappointment that was Argentina’s World Cup campaign, and he was unlucky not to get a hat-trick against Alaves.

Messi saw a free-kick crash back off the bar late in the first half after going over the wall, so when he was handed another chance from a similar position in the 64th minute, he changed tack. This time, 22 yards out, he surprised the jumping Alaves defenders by going underneath and giving Fernando Pacheco in goal no chance. He sent another curling effort off the post soon after.

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