Soccer / messi
Messi Unleashes Mayhem On Betis To Bring Barcelona Closer To League Title
While many are waiting for the Likes of Messi to wane with age and give way for Younger players, the Argentine Captain and father of three is leaving no stone unturned in his quest to grab a treble this season and perhaps pick another Ballon d'Or prize. Sunday night saw the Barcelona best player net a hat-trick against Real Betis, thereby bringing the spanish champions closer to winning the league title. I wouldn't say Messi was at his best against Betis, however, an average performance by Argentine is always more than enough to drown an opposing team. Source That performance saw Real Betis fans give the Barcelona captain a standing ovation at the Benito Villamarin's Pitch, and I could feel the emotions in the stadium. Indeed, Leo is a living legend and the manner at which he scored those goals were mind blowing. The Laliga top scorer capped his hat-trick of the night with a masterful lob to seal the game at 4-1. The win against Real Betis on Sunday now puts the defending Champions 10 Points ahead of second placed Simeone's side. Anybody can score goals but Messi's goals could sometimes be called the Eight world wonder. For me, he is the best in the World and trust me, I will say without any prejudice that he is the Greatest Of All Times. In fact, Betis fans had lent credence to that when stood to hand the Argentine a deserved accolade. It was Messi's 33rd hat-trick and it came in a magnificent manner. After the game, the Five Times Ballon d'Or winner said, "I don’t remember a night like this (being applauded by rival supporters), I’m really grateful for the way the fans responded, I was just lucky that they went in and that we got the three points." Messi is not really the talking type, he just prefers to do the talking on the pitch. But I noticed something, Barcelona lost their conventional ball possession to Betis, perhaps their lowest since 2004-5 season. However, Despite the fact that the defending champions were only able record 43.9 %, Ernesto Valverde had his plans well executed and of course it was enough for his magician to pull his stunt. The Barcelona coach seemed to have preferred a different formation against Betis, as he opted for the 4-4-2 instead of 4-3-3. He also did a little shake up in the starting Lineup, as Arturo Vidal was started ahead of the Brazilian Philippe Coutinho. For me, Coutinho did a little better against Lyon during their Wednesday Champions league duel, maybe Valverde feels he wasn't at his best to start against Betis. Though Barcelona weren't at their best as regards the midfield, the presence of Vidal added some sprinkling of combativeness in the middle. The Chilean played behind the attacking duo Suarez and Messi, and I guess he gave to Valverde what he needed. Vidal was the one who won the free kick which the Argentine legend converted with aplomb to put the Catalans ahead at the 18th minute. It was a piercing strike into the top left corner that left Betis goalkeeper Lopez with no chance. It wasn't easy for Setien's men as they were seen couple of times ruffling Barcelona's feathers, however, the Champions showed the class they are made of and were able to scale through. The Argentine got his brace just few minutes before the halftime break, as he finished with the touch of a Veteran a back-heel through-ball from his Uruguayan striking partner. Though Luis Suarez was a juxtaposition of the ugly and good against Betis, that assist to Messi is worth mentioning. He should have netted himself in the first half after Lionel Messi set him up, however, his strike wasn't clinical and Lopez was there to deny him that glory. The Striker has been a bit funny in discharging his attacking duties, as he has been seen scoring hard goals than simpler ones. Not too long after one of his misses, the Uruguayan forward pierced through the Betis defence to net his 128th goal in Laliga for Barcelona. It was Suarez's 18th league goal of the season and that makes him one of the top scorer in Europes top leagues. For the Argentine legend, it was his 29th of the season and only God can tell what he still has in mind to execute this season.