Lionel Messi scores 700th career goal but Barcelona stutter in title race

The Argentinian reached the benchmark in Barcelona’s 2-2 draw against Atletico Madrid, a result that made him lose ground against Real Madrid.

But for Messi, this is just the latest record in an amazing career that shows no signs of slowing down.

The cheeky finish was his 630th goal in 724 appearances for the Catalan club, combined with the 70 goals he has scored on the international stage.

These are the statistics that make him the top scorer for the club and the country.

The 33-year-old also joins a list of illustrious names such as Pelé, Ferenc Puskas and Gerd Muller for reaching the 700 mark, a company that also includes longtime rival Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Portuguese striker scored his 700th goal in October last year in a Euro 2020 qualifier against Ukraine.
The two are still far behind Czech-Austrian striker Josef Bican, who has scored more than 800 goals in his career from 1928 to 1955, according to UEFA.
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Lionel Messi of Barcelona scores a penalty to reach 700 career goals.

Barcelona slips again

Despite his historic achievement, Messi was in no mood to celebrate.

His delightfully chipped kick was not enough to win his team’s three points, which appear to be short of their title defense.

The hosts lost their heads twice, Saul converting two penalties for Atletico, third.

Messi had been involved in the opening game of Barcelona with his whipped corner bouncing off Diego Costa for an own goal.

However, the result leaves the Catalan one point behind Real Madrid after playing an additional match.

“It’s a shame and the title of champion is getting harder and harder for us in every match,” said Barcelona coach Quique Setien after the match.

“Dropping these points in reality takes us further from the title but we have to keep working hard.”

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