Another Barcelona match and a further three goals for the attacking trio of Leo Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar. Messi scored twice and Suarez added a third in a 3-1 victory over Sporting Gijon as they took charge of the La Liga title race on Wednesday night.
The free-scoring trio have 89 goals between them this season and are widely considered to be the three best players in the world right now. Indeed, only Cristiano Ronaldo – and perhaps his past misdemeanours – stopped Suarez from joining his team-mates on the Ballon d'Or podium last month.
However, while they seem capable of tearing even the best defensive lines apart, they have noticeably struggled with what should be a very simple task for a professional footballer: scoring a penalty.
Wednesday's victory may have seen Messi score his 300th La Liga goal and also taken Suarez to 40 goals for the season, but it also saw another missed penalty from one of the famed MSN. It was Uruguayan given the chance this time around, but he failed. Now, all three of them have missed penalties this season with six of the 12 spot kicks failing to find the back of the net.
That stat from Opta does include Messi's *missed* penalty against Celta Vigo last weekend. As we all know, he intended to miss the penalty as to allow Suarez to latch onto it and score. The world went mental and we are only just about moving on.
The latest miss
Neymar is responsible for four of those misses and has, as a result, been relieved of the duty for the foreseeable future. However, Suarez proved he is no better with a rather tame effort against Gijon on Wednesday. He made up for it, though, converting an absolutely wonderful goal to seal the match.
Thus proving the theory that MSN are simply better scoring from open play. There is also the inconvenient fact that even with the six missed efforts, Barcelona have still scored more penalties than anyone else.