Lionel Messi contract with Barcelona expires in less than 3 months. But the mystery remains as the Argentine superstar keeps his cards closed: Will he continue in the great team of Barcelona where he grew up and became a man or will he go to play in another team and another country? Of course, there are many who believe, among them the newly elected president of the Blaugrana, Joan Laporta, that Messi will stay close to him, because he is part of the… heart of the Catalan team.
Apart from that, however, Lionel Messi has two big challenges ahead of him. He faces two important opponents in a week within decisive games, who will judge a lot. First, he is now claiming his 11th championship with Barcelona. Therefore, on Saturday he will go to the «Alfredo di Stéfano» and not to the Bernabeu (it is being reconstructed) where he will face Real Madrid for the 23rd time. Thus he will reach the number 90 of the pitches in which he has played with his team, having scored 69 goals out of the 89 in which he has played. From the day he made his debut with the Barcelona jersey, on November 19, 2005. Then he claims the 70 games but maybe the 5th double as a Blaugrana footballer.
And it is the Santiago Bernabéu that tops the list with 15 goals, four more than those endorsed by Madrid at the Camp Nou. Some mythical figures such as Anfield, Old Trafford, San Paolo, Allianz Arena, Signal Iduna Park and Da Luz on the sidelines of La Cartuja have resisted him, which will give him another chance in the cup final.
But Messi does not want to miss the opportunity, perhaps the only one, before the expected return of the public next season (also at the Bernabéu) to see the door in Valdebebas.
Doing it with a victory would also be the best way to bury the strange drought that he is going through against Real Madrid. There are six consecutive Classics (since Cristiano Ronaldo left) in which he has not celebrated a goal since 2-2 at the Camp Nou, with the League already won mathematically, on May 6, 2018.
Messi giant in «El Clásico»
Next month there will be three years. It was also six to zero against the merengues since the Cup final lost in 2014 (1-2) at Mestalla to 1-1 at home in 2016-17. He broke the losing streak in a big way on April 23, 2017 in Chamartín with a double at 2-3.
The second, in the 92nd minute, was the triumph and his goal 500 / now he has already been 663) with Barça, who celebrated by showing his shirt with his last name and the number ’10’ to the madridista stands who have suffered so much watching him play since their debut on November 19, 2005.
Forming a hat-trick with Samuel Eto’o and Ronaldinho, applauded in that indelible 0-3, he started his story against Real and on Saturday he will reach 45 games. Already a historic «top scorer» of the Classic with 26 goals, eight more than Di Stéfano and Cristiano, he will equal the absent Sergio Ramos to 45 matches played in the maximum rivalry. As the Sevilla captain, he is released on June 30 and only he knows maybe if it will be the last Clásico he plays.
Leo, ‘Pichichi’ with 23 goals, four more than Gerard Moreno and the now injured Luis Suárez, has it very clear. He only thinks about scoring and winning to get closer to the alirón and prevent Madrid from knocking him down in three Clásicos in a row for the first time in his career. Messi’s hunger is infinite.