Lionel Messi wasn’t at his brilliant best against Paris Saint-Germain earlier this month, which led some football fans to conclude that the Barcelona legend is now in decline.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner, who turns 34 in June, failed to prevent Barça slumping to a 4-1 defeat at Camp Nou.
However, take that game out of the equation and Messi’s form in 2021 has been outstanding.
Since the turn of the year, Messi has scored 14 goals in 14 games. He’s also provided four assists for his teammates.
By the way, fourteen goals in 2021 is more than any other player in Europe.
Messi scored his 14th goal of 2021 - and his 24th goal of the campaign - in a 2-0 win for Barcelona away at Sevilla on Saturday.
He set up Ousmane Dembele for the game’s opening goal and then showed great tenacity and determination to make it 2-0 with five minutes left on the clock.
You can watch Messi’s latest goal here…
That's now 19 league goals for the campaign. He currently sits three goals clear of his close friend Luis Suarez, who joined Atletico Madrid in the summer, in the race for the Pichichi.
Sevilla’s players couldn’t handle him, as this clip shows…
Joan Jordan tries to grab Messi's shirt
Joan Jordan couldn’t even stop him while using his hands, despite his best efforts…
Per Opta, Messi completed 41 out of 45 attempted passes in the opposition’s half of the pitch…
After such a complete performance, it was no surprise to see the legendary forward earn the Budweiser King of the Match award.
Is Messi still the world's best footballer?
There have been suggestions from some that Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland are now the world’s best players following Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo’s recent disappointing performances in the Champions League.
But write the pair off at your peril.
Messi, in particular, is still producing outrageously good performances most weeks.
On current form, you wouldn’t bet against him inspiring Barcelona to a miracle turnaround in Paris next month…News Now - Sport News