A quick look at the stats suggests Lionel Messi is having another extraordinary season.
In 30 games, the Barcelona legend and scored 23 goals and provided 16 assists.
He’s the highest-rated player in La Liga this season, according to WhoScored.com, and by a distance too. Casemiro is second in the list with an average rating of 7.57. Messi’s is 8.61.
However, Messi’s average rating was even higher before Sunday’s Clasico against Real Madrid. This was not a game that the six-time Ballon d’Or winner will look back on fondly.
WhoScored gave Messi a rating of 6.39 - which means this was his lowest-rated performance in a La Liga match this season.
There have been times in recent months where Messi, who turns 33 in June, hasn’t seemed quite himself on the pitch for one reason or another.
But even on those rare occasions where he’s below par, he usually produces a couple of magical moments.
This wasn’t the case at the Bernabeu, though, in the fixture that Barça really could have done with a Messi masterclass.
Instead, they got a Messi disasterclass. At least that was the view of many football fans on social media.
Here’s a small selection of tweets reacting to Messi’s disappointing performance in Madrid…
One Twitter user has even uploaded a video of Messi’s disasterclass at the Bernabeu (forgive the quality of the video, it’s not great)…
Another version of Messi’s ‘highlights’ has emerged - via MA Sports on YouTube - featuring all of his touches from the game. It provides a much fairer reflection of Messi’s overall performance than the previous video and it’s much better quality, too…
Both videos show that Messi was far from his brilliant best on this occasion.
He was trying to make things happen but was kept quiet by Madrid’s players, who did an excellent job against the Argentine forward.
And on the two occasions where he could have scored, he spurned both opportunities, shooting directly at Thibaut Courtois in the first half and then being outsprinted by Marcelo in the second.
Messi has now failed to score or assist a single goal in a Clasico since Cristiano Ronaldo, who was at the Bernabeu watching his old team, left Real Madrid in 2018.
- Ronaldo's reaction to Vinicius Jr's goal v Barcelona
- Real Madrid 2-0 Barcelona: Match report
- Marcelo's epic tackle on Messi