Years go by, but Lionel Messi (Rosario, Argentina; 33 years old) is not running out of batteries, responsible and somewhat overwhelmed at the beginning of the course because he felt he was the only leader as a result of the sporting and economic transition of the Barça club, although now released and again a zenith footballer because young people have taken a step forward, also around him. Furthermore, the idea of Ronald Koeman and Barcelona aspiring to the double (after winning the Cup) has come to fruition, as Leo wanted to, at least, think about continuity at Barça, since he tried to leave without success in the previous year – denied because the burofax arrived late – and now he can leave the club for free.
He is burning and active, but above all he smiles and that is the best news because at 10 – as Pep Guardiola anticipated in his days – you have to know how to interpret his silences but also his gestures. And on the grass, with the ball between his feet, he does not cheat. “He is happier than ever and is seen as a child with young people. They take care of him, pamper him, adore him and run non-stop, in addition to finding complicities with Pedri, Ilaix, De Jong… ”, they explain from the Barcelona sports area; “We hope it renews.”
Against Getafe, Messi was once again the catapult and also the point and end of the Barça game, the frontier for any attack. He warned with a shot to the post as the curtain opened and then scored his fastest goal of the season in the League in the 8th minute to celebrate another later. A recital that lasted for 90 minutes because La Pulga counted seven shots of the nine that Barça made, Araujo was right in his header – to Messi’s center – and Griezmann was right in the final penalty that Leo let him shoot to share the glory , even if a new ball was not brought home as a result of a hat-trick.
“That is the greatness of Messi. That competes like no one else, but that also makes the rest compete to fight for common goals. He is smart, generous and over the years he has learned to be a true leader ”, they say from the offices of the Barcelona sports city, a bit agitated in recent days because it is known that Jorge Messi is in the city – he appeared on the Mini to speak with President Joan Laporta, who will personally negotiate the extension of Leo’s contract as did his predecessor Josep Maria Bartomeu at the time.
For now, the 10th speaks on the field and is heard loud and clear, with four doubles in the last six games. So many that lead to 25 goals in the league (curiously one more than all of Getafe and two more than bottom Eibar); A figure that puts land in the middle with his immediate pursuer -Benzema has 21 with Real Madrid- and that allows him to count 12 seasons reaching that figure at least. Nothing new for the Argentine, who accumulates seven trophies as Pichichi of LaLiga – seasons 2009-2010, 2011-2012, 2012-2013, 2016-2017, 2017-2018, 2018-2019 and 2019-2020- and who could achieve the fifth consecutive to take the record away from Di Stéfano (1955-1959) and Hugo Sánchez (1984-1988), who were left with four goal marks. Although he still has to renew his seventh Golden Boot, because Lewandowski, from Bayern, has no one to tie him in the Bundesliga, as he already has 35 autographs.
Leo, if the goals of the Champions League (five) and the Cup (three, two in the final) are added, he already reaches 33 and elevates him to the category of gifted in football because he already links 13 consecutive courses reaching more than the thirty celebrations. A figure that this year rounds up with 11 assists and that expresses his capital status at Barça because this year he has directly participated in 44 goals for the team (40% of the total). With 667 networks in 772 games since he put on the Barça shirt for the first time -it is 0.86 per duel- and 268 assists -0.35-, Leo wants to add to the 35 Barça titles (four Champions League, 10 Leagues, seven Cups, three Club World Cups and European Super Cups, as well as eight Spanish Super Cups). “The first of the new era”, read on the Barça shirt that all the players in La Cartuja wore to celebrate the Cup, the one with which everyone wanted to take a photo with the 10. It remains to be seen if Messi leads this era, but for the moment he makes it clear that he does not want to conjugate verbs in the past because he is still the king of the present.