Lionel Messi Scored His 650th Goal For Barcelona With A Wonderful Free-Kick

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Lionel Messi Scored His 650th Goal For Barcelona With A Wonderful Free-Kick

Lionel Messi scored his 650th goal for Barcelona with a wonderful free-kick as they beat Athletic Bilbao to move up to second in La Liga.

Athletic had a five-man wall, a player lying behind the wall and another on the line but Messi still managed to curl the ball into the top corner – his 49th free-kick goal for the club.

Athletic were level when Jordi Alba turned a cross into his own net.

But Antoine Griezmann slammed in the winner from Oscar Mingueza’s pass.

Barcelona move above Real Madrid on goal difference, but the rivals both sit 10 points behind Atletico Madrid – who have a game in hand on both sides and who defeated Cadiz earlier in the day.

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Ronald Koeman’s side seem to be over their dreadful start to the season with eight wins and two draws in their past 10 La Liga games.

Barcelona’s day ended better than it started, with the club denying leaking details of Messi’s contract to El Mundo.

The club plan legal action after the Spanish newspaper published details of his £492m contract.

Barcelona denied “any responsibility for the publication of this document”.

According to El Mundo, Messi’s four-year contract was worth a possible 555,237,619 euros until 30 June, 2021.

It means the 33-year-old would be receiving up to £123m a season.

Barcelona said in a statement that they “regret” its publication, adding: “FC Barcelona categorically denies any responsibility for the publication of this document, and will take appropriate legal action against the newspaper El Mundo, for any damage that may be caused as a result of this publication.

“FC Barcelona expresses its absolute support for Lionel Messi, especially in the face of any attempt to discredit his image, and to damage his relationship with the entity where he has worked to become the best player in the world and in football history.”

Argentina international Messi joined Barcelona at 13 but handed in a transfer request in August.

There remains uncertainty if he will remain with the club when his contract runs out in the summer.

Messi is Barcelona’s record goalscorer and has won 10 La Liga titles, the Champions League four times and the Ballon d’Or – awarded to the world’s best player – six times.

His controversial summer request to leave followed clashes with club president Josep Maria Bartomeu, who resigned in October.

Messi, who described Bartomeu’s reign as “a disaster”, said in December: “I don’t know what I’m going to do yet.”

Lionel Messi Scored His 650th Goal For Barcelona With A Wonderful Free-Kick

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