Messi's debut anniversary – Barcelona great's finest goals across 15 years at Camp Nou

By Sports Desk October 16, 2019

On October 16, 2004, Lionel Messi got his first taste of competitive senior football for Barcelona, coming on as a substitute for Deco against city rivals Espanyol.

Few watching at the time could have imagined quite what was to come from the Argentinian maestro, who has gone on to become arguably the greatest player of all time.

Messi's influence at Barca has become unrivalled, scoring 604 times to become their all-time leading scorer.

Fittingly, the 15th anniversary of his Barca debut comes on the same day he was presented with the European Golden Shoe for last season, and we have looked back at 10 of his very best goals in action for Barcelona.

Albacete (H): May 1, 2005

Even at 17, Messi had the confidence of a veteran. Having already had one goal wrongly ruled out for offside - an audacious chip from the edge of the box - Messi's focus was far from knocked and just a minute later he latched onto Ronaldinho's scooped pass before lobbing the ball over Albacete stopper Raul Valbuena from 16 yards. Some way to open your account for one of Europe's great clubs.

Getafe (H): April 18, 2007

In the 14 years since Messi first got on the scoresheet, one strike stands out as the best: his Diego Maradona-esque solo goal against Getafe. Messi picked up the ball in his own half and danced around two players before turning on the pace, beating two more defenders and going around the goalkeeper, capping it with a right-footed finish.

Real Zaragoza (A): March 21, 2010

Described by some as 'a defining goal' in his career, Messi's strike against Real Zaragoza seemed to take him from 'very good' into another class entirely. Messi displayed all he had to offer in this goal, which began when he won the ball from a tackle on halfway. From there, he shrugged off one challenge, raced towards the box and turned a defender inside out before drilling the ball into the far corner, leaving coach Pep Guardiola speechless.

Athletic Bilbao (A): April 27, 2013

Barca were in the midst of a Champions League semi-final shellacking from Bayern Munich when they arrived at San Mames. A goal down in a match that would eventually finish 2-2, Messi received possession from Thiago Alcantara, twisted past Mikel San Jose, Carlos Gurpegui and Ander Herrera with minimal space in which to operate before nonchalantly sidefooting home from just inside the penalty area.

Cordoba (H): December 20, 2014

Messi rounded off a 5-0 procession at Camp Nou with a frankly absurd piece of technique. Cordoba defender Jose Angel Crespo made glancing headed contact with Jordi Alba's searching cross from the left that might ordinarily have averted danger. But Barca's star man pulled the ball down with his left foot, swivelled 180 degrees and crashed right footed past Juan Carlos at the goalkeeper's near post.

Bayern Munich (H): May 6, 2015

Having already opened the scoring three minutes earlier to give Barca a 1-0 advantage over Bayern Munich in the Champions League semi-final, Messi doubled his tally with a sumptuous effort. Ivan Rakitic's pass sent Messi on his way, before the little maestro's trickery put Jerome Boateng on his backside and allowed the Argentine to casually lift the ball over the onrushing Manuel Neuer.

Athletic Bilbao (N): May 30, 2015

The second part of a treble-winning season for Barca came in the form of the Copa del Rey against Athletic Bilbao. With 20 minutes gone and the score deadlocked, Messi set off on a marauding run down the right wing and soon found himself trapped among three defenders. Naturally, Messi was able to float past the trio as if they were not there, before cutting into the box and beating Iago Herrerin at his near post.

Real Madrid (A): April 23, 2017

El Clasico rarely disappoints for football fans around the globe, and this edition was no different. Anything but a win would essentially hand Real Madrid the title and it looked to be headed for a 2-2 draw until Sergi Roberto's swashbuckling run in the 92nd minute gave Jordi Alba the chance to square it to Messi, who finished with aplomb from the edge of the area for his 500th Barcelona goal.

Real Sociedad (A): January 18, 2018

Over the past few years, Messi has really mastered the art of free-kick taking, with the skill being one of few to elude him in his younger days. This strike in a 4-2 LaLiga triumph at La Real last January showed just how far he has come, as he lined up a set-piece about 35 yards from goal and coolly curled it into the top-left corner, wrapping up victory for Barca, who had fallen 2-0 behind. 

Real Betis – March 17, 2019

We have become so accustomed to Messi's brilliance that he makes the extraordinary seem normal, but his hat-trick clincher in March's 4-1 win at Real Betis was pure genius. After receiving a cut-back from Ivan Rakitic, he caressed a first-time chipped effort over Pau Lopez and in off the crossbar from about 18 yards when shooting through a crowded penalty area looked an impossibility.

Related items

  • KC join Clarendon in final after penalty win over JC KC join Clarendon in final after penalty win over JC

    Kingston College (KC) are through to the final of the ISSA Champions Cup after a dower affair against Jamaica College (JC) ended in penalties at the National Stadium in Kingston on Saturday.

    There was a flurry of chances when the game just began but the quality of football dipped with the increasing intensity of the rain. With first-half action coming to an end, KC struck. A long ball played out from the back by the unusually deep Jahmari Morrison was poorly cleared by Nickache Murray, when the sliced clearance fell, it was Demario McCarthy who was first to it and his sliding effort was struck perfectly to give KC a 1-0 lead heading into the halftime break.

    It seemed that would be all she wrote for JC because truth be told, they hadn’t looked likely to trouble the KC backline too much.

    That changed with the game winding down and in driving rain, JC got a corner in the 83rd minute.

    KC cleared partially cleared that corner but it fell kindly to a JC boot. A shot from that boot ricocheted to the left side of the field where a JC player dismissed his marker and whipped in a beautiful cross for Shadae Lopez to head into the far corner.

    JC had their tails up and KC had some hair-raising moments after that.

    But time would run out on JC and they would have to try to do it from the penalty spot.

    KC missed their first two penalties but JC could not maintain their lead, striking the woodwork with one penalty and then seeing another saved.

    The Manning Cup champions began striking their penalties more confidently and JC folded under the pressure to end up 3-2 losers.

    KC will now face Clarendon College who had things go all their way in their semi-final against Clarendon College, winning 3-0.

  • Clarendon College make light work of defending champs, head to final Clarendon College make light work of defending champs, head to final

    There still won’t be a successful title defence of the ISSA Champions Cup after Clarendon College comfortably dealt with the final-four challenge from Cornwall College inside the National Stadium in Kingston on Saturday.

  • Belgium puzzler as Boyata appears in Batshuayi shirt Belgium puzzler as Boyata appears in Batshuayi shirt

    Belgium defender Dedryck Boyata bizarrely played in Michy Batshuayi's shirt for part of the Euro 2020 qualifier against Russia on Saturday.

    Belgium won the match 4-1 to clinch top spot in Group I and substitute striker Batshuayi spent most of the contest on the bench, although onlookers spotted Boyata wearing his number 23 shirt at the start of the second half.

    The mix-up was noticed by match officials around 10 minutes after the interval, and defender Boyata swapped to the correct shirt bearing his own name.

    Chelsea forward Batshuayi, who came on for the closing 13 minutes, joked on Twitter: "He realised his dream"

    Boyata also saw the funny side, and the Hertha Berlin defender posted a picture of himself in the wrong top on Instagram, along with three laughter emojis.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.