Messi targeting favourite victims at Atletico

Playing today Betis     vs    Getafe        19:00 Racing    vs    Sporting Málaga    vs    Zaragoza    21:00 Espanyol    vs    Levante     23:00
Lionel Messi has more goals against Atletico than any other domestic rival.  Net photo
Lionel Messi has more goals against Atletico than any other domestic rival. Net photo

Playing today
Betis     vs    Getafe        19:00
Racing    vs    Sporting
Málaga    vs    Zaragoza    21:00
Espanyol    vs    Levante     23:00

Playing on Sunday   
Villarreal    vs   Athletic    13:00    Rayo   vs    Real Madrid    17:00    Sociedad    vs    Mallorca    19:00
Valencia    vs    Sevilla
Osasuna    vs    Granada
Atlético    vs    Barcelona    22:30   
MADRID

Lionel Messi will have his favourite victims in his sights when Barcelona play at Atletico Madrid on Sunday and the Argentina forward comes into the game in a rich vein of form even by his high standards.

The World Player of the Year has more goals against Atletico than any other domestic rival - 17 in 13 matches, including 14 in La Liga and three in the King’s Cup.

His last two games against the Madrid club yielded hat-tricks and the 24-year-old will be looking to add to his 146 league goals in 200 appearances when he takes to the field at the Calderon on Sunday.

Messi netted four against Valencia last weekend, taking his league tally for the season to 27 from 23 matches, one goal fewer than Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo.

“I have the confidence of my team mates, the coach and of the people important to me and that makes me happy,” Messi said after the Valencia game.

“We just have to carry on enjoying Messi, and he the rest of the team,” midfielder Andres Iniesta added.

Despite Messi’s exploits, Barca’s bid for a fourth straight title has foundered due to their patchy form away from home and they will be 13 points behind Real Madrid if the leaders win at local rivals Rayo Vallecano earlier on Sunday.

Barca have taken 34 of a possible 36 points at the Nou Camp, scoring 50 goals and conceding four. However, on their travels they have won four, drawn five and lost two, with 18 goals for and 13 against.

Real and Barca, the world’s richest clubs by income, have again left their poorer domestic rivals trailing and Valencia are 11 points behind Barca in third ahead of their game at home to mid-table Sevilla on Sunday.

 

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