It could have happened against Celta, but in the end it took place against Sporting. Leo Messi scored his 300th La Liga goal on the day he played his 334th game in the competition.
It didn’t happen against Celta because the Argentine decided not to shoot from the penalty spot, instead preferring to pass to Luis Suarez, replicating Johan Cruyff. But against Sporting, a little later than expected, he reached the milestone.
It wasn’t just any goal, either, but one true to the style which has seen him score so many in a Barça shirt. With a low, curling left-footed effort from outside the area, Ivan Cuellar, the home side’s goalkeeper had no chance.
He didn’t stop there. Minutes later, after Sporting had equalised, he scored again, taking his league tally to 301 after a great assist from Luis Suarez.
Messi averages 0.90 goals per game in Spain’s top flight and has more goals than any other player who has played in the league. He became the league’s top scorer in November 2014 when he overtook Zarra as he scored a hat-trick in a win over Sevilla.
The Argentine has scored 172 goals in 167 games at Camp Nou, with 129 more coming in games away from the Catalan capital.
In all competitions, Messi has played 511 goals and scored 439 goals since he made his debut against Espanyol as a 17-year-old.