Lionel Messi claims record seventh La Liga Golden Boot
Argentine legend Lionel Messi bagged his seventh La Liga Golden Boot after scoring twice as Barcelona trounced Alaves 5-0 in the final match of the season. Notably, Messi finished the league with 25 goals, the most in the season. Meanwhile, Barcelona ended the season on number two with 82 points in the standings, five behind newly-crowned champions Real Madrid. Here's more on the same.
Barca forward Ansu Fati put them in front midway through the first half with Messi and strike partner Luis Suarez extending the lead towards halftime. In the second half, Nelson Semedo netted yet another goal before Messi added a fifth in the 75th minute. Besides, the hosts were unable to make a comeback at any point in the match.
Messi yet again emerged as the top scorer this season with 25 goals and 21 assists. Notably, Karim Benzema, who did not score in Real Madrid's 2-2 draw at Leganes, held the second spot with 21 goals.
During the season, Messi became the only player to score 20 or more goals in 12 consecutive La Liga seasons. With 21 assists in 2019-20, the 33-year-old overtook Xavi as the player with most assists in a single season. He also went on to register his 700th career goal as Barcelona and Atletico Madrid played out a 2-2 draw in gameweek 33.
Messi became the first ever player in the history of La Liga to claim a double of 20 goals and 20 assists in a single season. Arsenal's Thierry Henry is the only other player to achieve the feat in the 21st century (Premier League 2002/03).
20 goals and 20 assists in a single league season this century:— B/R Football (@brfootball) July 11, 2020
-Thierry Henry 2002-03
-Leo Messi 2019-20
End of list. pic.twitter.com/A9emiBCfLY
Barcelona failed to win a third consecutive title, having won the previous two editions (2018/19 and 2017/18). Surprisingly, they lost to Osasuna 1-2 at home, following which captain Messi labeled the team "weak" and "inconsistent". Earlier, their rivals Real Madrid defeated Villarreal 2-1 to win a record 34th title. Zinedine Zidane and his boys finished the season with the highest points (87).
Messi looked rather elated as Barca bounced back against Alaves on Sunday. "Today we saw something else, it was a difficult game due to the situation we were in and the kick off time and heat but the team responded with a different attitude and showed great commitment," Messi said. "It's an important step for what's coming next."