Lionel Messi netted once each on either side of a Philippe Coutinho strike to fire Barcelona to a 3-0 win over Alaves on Saturday at Camp Nou.
Ernesto Valverde’s men dominated the proceedings as expected, but were frustrated by the visitors’ disciplined rearguard and as a result, had to wait till the 64th minute to break the deadlock. Messi, after having struck the woodwork in the first period, opened the scoring with a cheeky free-kick under the defensive wall.
Substitute Philippe Coutinho made it 2-0 in the 83rd minute with a trademark finish cutting in from the left-side, before Messi added the third, deep into stoppage time to add more gloss to the scoreline.
In the process, Messi achieved a unique feat, as he scored Barcelona’s 6,000th La Liga goal. The little magician had also scored the Catalans’ 5,000th Liga goal nine-and-a-half years ago. As expected, fans took to celebrating the genius of the Argentine forward;
Messi scored FCB’s 5.000th Liga goal in 2009.
Before scoring the 6.000th with a under the wall free kick today, he was directly involved in 462 of the 1.000 Liga goals we scored on the last 9 years.
462 out of 1.000! 👑
— Lucas Resende (@lucasammr) August 18, 2018
February 2009 – Messi scores goal 5000 for Barcelona in La Liga.
August 2018 – Messi scores goal 6000 for Barcelona in La Liga.
1000 league goals in 9 years. Messi has scored 336 out of those. pic.twitter.com/PRxmWysGVx
— Footy Humour (@FootyHumour) August 18, 2018
Messi scored the 5000th goal for Barca.
Messi scored the 6000th league goal for Barca.
Messi scored 91 goals in a calendar year for Barca.
Messi has won 30 titles since his Barca career.
In short, Messi is Barca.
— AURA❤️COOL (@TWEETORACLE) August 18, 2018
Lionel Andres Messi. I have no words. Just cherish him as long as he can play and entertain us. The greatest to ever touch the football. The greatest to ever grace the football pitch. Simply the 🐐.
— Matthew® (@mattbolistic) August 18, 2018
Messi scoring La Liga's 6000th goal, as he drops another 10/10 performance. As if it was written in the stars. Simply, the greatest ever.
— ¹⁰ (@ClinicaIEden) August 18, 2018
This is Lionel Messi's world and we're just living in it.
(Unfortunately Higuain, the AFA, Bartomeu and Valverde too)
— sj (@sun2jay) August 18, 2018
Tbh I Consider myself lucky being alive in the Messi era, the era of the 🐐
Golazo del Barca… golazo de Messi pic.twitter.com/BX9fv7r46R
— Mr.┏̲O̶̲̅┓̲P ┏̲A̶̲̅┓ (@ogbeni_opa) August 18, 2018
" Thanks God for Messi " pic.twitter.com/20BMoiIHDn
— • (@ExtraMessi) August 18, 2018
You know that scene in Infinity War when Thor shows up and just starts blasting aliens all over the battlefield? That's Messi. He's a god against mortals.
— Darryl (@LordMoloch) August 18, 2018
It just felt wromg for anyone to score Barcelona's 6,000th laliga goal asides from Messi. It felt like it was written in the stars, it was bound to happen. After all that's some way Barça pays back a legend like Messi
— Nãif ➰ (@NaifFCB_) August 18, 2018
— infosmessi (@INFOSMESSl) August 18, 2018
Take away Messi's goals from today- even without them he was magical, his phenomenal pass, his style, his game reading is above everyone else. THE BEST IN THE HISTORY.
— Zoe 💭 (@imaginiuss) August 18, 2018
It's really sad that we're so used to Messi's magic so we just can't appreciate it enough. And when we realise that, it might be too late.
— а.м.🌻 (@_anamarri) August 18, 2018
Coutinho, left out of the starting line-up by Valverde, managed to make a great impact coming on in the second half. His goal killed off the game and ensured Barcelona’s title defence was off to a winning start.
Coutinho what a goal!! pic.twitter.com/n0e4J4M4y5
— Teto Barça (@TetoBarca_) August 18, 2018
You know you’re in trouble when Coutinho cuts in on the left.
— Brazil Football 🇧🇷 (@BrazilEdition) August 18, 2018
Coutinho just scored and you can probably imagine exactly how it looked
— ty (@finalthrd) August 18, 2018
Coutinho scores the most Coutinho goal imaginable. You know what's coming. The defender does. The keeper does. Dread it. Run from it. Destiny still arrives.
— Sameer (@Sameer_R13) August 18, 2018
— Zion Elad (@endowedzion) August 18, 2018
Let me see Valverde disrespect Coutinho like this ever again.. idc if he’s 20% fit know ur role and start Barca’s 2nd best player
— New Account (@Coutskill3) August 18, 2018
Coutinho is about to have the best season ever Mark my words !
— Edwin Ortiz (@edwinxwulf) August 18, 2018