Despite the fact former Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo has been with Serie A club Juventus since July 2018, his rivalry with Barcelona star forward Lionel Messi continues. On Saturday, Messi registered a hat-trick against Celta Vigo at Camp Nou to help his side get a 4-1 win in a La Liga match. In doing so, Messi equalised Ronaldo’s record of player with most hat-tricks in La Liga history (34).
The Argentine forward converted a kick from the spot in the 22nd minute to get his goal. Later, Messi took a sensational free kick from 25 yards out, that curled over the wall into the right corner of the goal-post, just at the stroke of half time. Two minutes into the second half, the Barca star converted another free-kick in a similar fashion to complete his hat-trick.
With Ronaldo no longer with Real Madrid, it is highly likely Messi would go on to surpass the Portuguese international and stand sole at the top spot in the record books. It was also Messi’s 427th goal in the Spanish league.
“We have a very big advantage, we have the best player in the world on our side who is also the best at taking free kicks,” Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets praised Messi after the match. “Little by little he has been improving at free kicks, he used to find them hard. Having him around gives us a real boost,” he added.
With the win, the defending Spanish Champions reached back to take the top spot in the table, tied at 25 points with Real Madrid, but with a better goal difference.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid too picked up a big win on Saturday as they defeated Eibar in an away game. A brace from Karim Benzema, a goal from defender Sergi Ramos and a goal from Federico Valverde saw Real winning the game 4-0 comfortably.