Lionel Messi nets flawless free kick in Barcelona's win vs. Atletico Madrid

Lionel Messi and Saul Niguez

Of the 600 goals, 539 have come in Barcelona colours, while he's also hit 61 goals in the blue and white of Argentina.

The Barcelona player now on 600 career goals for club and country - achieving all this in just 747 appearances.

In the 12 years since he first got on the scoresheet, only one of Messi's strikes was ever going to top this list: his Diego Maradona-esque solo goal against Getafe.

While the severity is still to be confirmed, Andres Iniesta was forced off over the weekend with a hamstring injury and is now a doubt for the Champions League second-leg clash against Chelsea.

Barcelona lived in Atleti's half to start the match, but couldn't quite challenge Jan Oblak.

While Atletico had few chances in the match as they looked to close the gap on Barca to two points, Simeone said: "It was an even match, I don't think we lacked application in the first half".

Diego Simeone makes a bold claim, says Atletico could have beaten Barcelona if Messi played for his team.

Respect enveloped the pulsating Camp Nou ahead of kick-off, with all players, coaching staff and supporters offering their remembrance to former Barcelona striker Enrique Castro Gonzalez, or Quini, who passed away late last month at the age of 68.

During a rare second-half sighting of the opposition penalty area, Barcelona again tested the reactions of Oblak, as Sergio Busquets arrowed a volleyed attempt towards the Slovenian's goal. Now the team must focus on the next big test that is Atletico Madrid vs Lokomotiv Moskow in Europa league.

With Barcelona dominant for large spells of the match, Costa often found himself isolated up top with little support, as the Valverde's men bossed possession with 58.2 % in the match.

The Spaniard said,"There is no player like Messi in the world".

After the match, Simeone praised the Argentine's quality, and said he was the difference between the two sides on the day. Costa, however, had strayed offside and Barca held on for what will surely prove a crucial three points.

With the win, Barcelona now have an eight-point cushion at the summit of the La Liga table.



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