Lionel Messi

Manchester United

Wednesday Kickoff: Messi, Griezmann, Toure and more

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A pair of La Liga's most prolific goalscorers headline Wednesday'snews.

The Spanish Supreme Court rejected Lionel Messi's appeal against his conviction for tax evasion although it remains unlikely the Barcelona forward ever serves time. (REPORT)

Atletico Madrid is set todemand that Manchester United pays more than half of Antoine Griezmann's $100 million transfer fee up front.

Pogba Named To Europe’s Best XI

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His form has been criticized by pundits in the media all season, but According to the CIES Football Observatory, Paul Pogba was one of the top midfielders this season.

Judged on categories like rigour, recovery, distribution, chance creation and take-ons, Pogba is one of the three highest ranked defensive central midfielders in Europe's top five leagues.

FC Barcelona

Barcelona Awarded Utterly Farcical Penalty Against Eibar As Lionel Messi And Co. Fall Short In La Liga Title Race (Photo & Videos)

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Barcelona came from two goals down to beat Eibar 4-2 on the final day of the La Liga season not that it was enough to prevent rivals Real Madrid from clinching their first title since 2012 with a 2-0 win over Malaga elsewhere.

Barca fell behind to a superbTakashi Inui brace but a late rally, coupled with a few 'favourable' refereeing decisions, saw the Catalans claw back the victory in dramatic fashion.

Barcelona: Lionel Messi Shows Off His Truly Enormous Collection Of Swapped Shirts (Photo)

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Lionel Messi has got around a bit over the years and, in doing so, has swapped a vast number of shirts with his fellow pros.

Indeed, the Barcelona icon posted a photo of his heaving collection on Instagram, also revealing that he's had a room of his house specially fitted to house the entirehaul.

Barcelona close to finalising agreement with world class star, Deal should be done in a few weeks

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Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi is expected to sign a new deal with the Catalan giants in a few weeks.

Both parties have been negotiating the contract extension for a while now and Sport are reporting that an agreement is close. Sport adds that Lionel Messi will sign on for five more seasons with Barcelona.

‘MSN’ hit 100 mark as Barca pile pressure on Madrid

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Madrid (AFP) – Neymar, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez were all on target as Barcelona beat Villarreal 4-1 to heap the pressure on Real Madrid, who travel to Granada later on Saturday.

Victory moved Barca three points clear of Madrid at the top of La Liga, but Real have four games left to the Catalans’ two.

‘MSN’ hit 100 mark as Barca pile pressure on Madrid

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Madrid (AFP) – Neymar, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez were all on target as Barcelona beat Villarreal 4-1 to heap the pressure on Real Madrid, who travel to Granada later on Saturday.

Victory moved Barca three points clear of Madrid at the top of La Liga, but Real have four games left to the Catalans’ two.

Uncanny: Lionel Messi Doppelganger Becomes Something Of A Minor Celebrity In Iran (Photos)

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The man you see afore ye is Riza Perestes, an Iranian gentleman who just so happens to share 99.99999999% of his DNA with a rather famous footballer by the name of Lionel Messi.

Riza has apparently become something of a minor phenomenon in his hometown, and now spends his days pottering around in an Argentina shirt whilst trying to make as many people do double-takes as possible.

Messi scores twice as Barcelona hit Osasuna for seven

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Barcelona (AFP) – Lionel Messi rewarded a homage by Barcelona fans with two more goals as they thrashed Osasuna 7-1 to move three points clear of Real Madrid at the top of La Liga.

The much-criticised Andre Gomes and Paco Alcacer also bagged doubles, whilst Javier Mascherano scored his first Barca goal in seven years with the club from the penalty spot.

Messi scores twice as Barcelona hit Osasuna for seven

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Barcelona (AFP) – Lionel Messi rewarded a homage by Barcelona fans with two more goals as they thrashed Osasuna 7-1 to move three points clear of Real Madrid at the top of La Liga.

The much-criticised Andre Gomes and Paco Alcacer also bagged doubles, whilst Javier Mascherano scored his first Barca goal in seven years with the club from the penalty spot.

Real Madrid Strip 357 Fans Of Their Season Tickets After Flogging Them To Barcelona Supporters For El Clasico

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Real Madrid have stripped over 350 fans of their season tickets after aconspicuous number of Barcelona supporters were spottedwatching El Clasico from sections of the Bernabeu supposedly reserved for home fans.

Sport are reporting that Los Blancos confiscated 357 season tickets in the wake of the match, which Barca won 3-2 in injury time thanks to the 500th goal of Lionel Messi's career.

Leading Barcelona to La Liga glory would be Lionel Messi’s greatest achievement

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After Messi slotted the ball into the corner with his left foot in Sunday’s el Clásico, he went off to the edge of the pitch to celebrate in front of baying Real Madrid fans. Barcelona’s title chances were reignited.

That’s what went through my head in the 92nd minute of Sunday’s Clásico.

Leading Barcelona to La Liga glory would be Lionel Messi’s greatest achievement

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After Messi slotted the ball into the corner with his left foot in Sunday’s el Clásico, he went off to the edge of the pitch to celebrate in front of baying Real Madrid fans. Barcelona’s title chances were reignited.

That’s what went through my head in the 92nd minute of Sunday’s Clásico.

I’ll cherish Messi memories, says Enrique

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona boss Luis Enrique insisted on Tuesday he will revel in his memories of coaching Lionel Messi, rather than miss him when he steps down at the end of the season.

Messi blew the La Liga title race wide open once more by scoring twice to bring up his 500th Barcelona goal in a thrilling 3-2 win at Real Madrid on Sunday.

Barcelona: Lionel Messi Manages To Sneak Suspended Neymar Into Post-Clasico Dressing Room Victory Photo

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The keen-eyed amongst you may well have noticed that a certain Neymar wasn't included in the Barcelona team that registered a rousing 3-2 victory over Real Madrid in Sunday night's suitably tempestuous El Clasico fixture.

Indeed, Neymar was left at homeafter Barca were warned that flouting a pending appeal into the Brazilian forward's recent red card against Malaga by fielding him against Real would see the club in breach of court regulations.

El Clasico: Lionel Messi Scores 500th Barcelona Goal To Secure Injury-Time Victory Over Real Madrid (Photos & Video)

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As was foretold in the prophecy, Lionel Messi's 500th goal for Barcelona was enough to sink Real Madrid in the final minute of Sunday night's El Clasico fixture and send the Catalans back to the top of La Liga, if only by the slimmest of margins.

Casemiro put Real ahead in the 28th minute before Messi scored No.

Last Second Messi Winner Keep Barca's Title Hopes Alive | Barca - 3, Real Madrid - 2

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- Lionel Messi Celebrating Scoring the Winner against Real Madrid -

I think the great thing about Leo is that he continues to surprise. After so many years he is still decisive. Andres Iniesta

Lionel Messi once again proved why he is still considered the Best in the World.

Football: ‘Best ever’ Messi turns tables on Madrid

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona coach Luis Enrique revelled in turning the tables on bitter rivals Real Madrid as Lionel Messi struck deep into stoppage time to edge a thrilling El Clasico 3-2 on Sunday.

Messi’s second goal of the night was his 500th for Barcelona and took the Catalans to the top of La Liga.

Football: ‘Best ever’ Messi turns tables on Madrid

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona coach Luis Enrique revelled in turning the tables on bitter rivals Real Madrid as Lionel Messi struck deep into stoppage time to edge a thrilling El Clasico 3-2 on Sunday.

Messi’s second goal of the night was his 500th for Barcelona and took the Catalans to the top of La Liga.

Five things we learned from El Clasico

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal deep into stoppage time to earn the Catalans a 3-2 win over Real Madrid in El Clasico on Sunday.

Here, AFP sports looks at five things we learned from the five-goal thriller.

Title race back on

Victory for Madrid would have all but sealed their first La Liga title in five years.

Five things we learned from El Clasico

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal deep into stoppage time to earn the Catalans a 3-2 win over Real Madrid in El Clasico on Sunday.

Here, AFP sports looks at five things we learned from the five-goal thriller.

Title race back on

Victory for Madrid would have all but sealed their first La Liga title in five years.

Messi hits Barcelona 500 with last gasp El Clasico winner

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal with almost the last kick of the game to blow the La Liga title race wide open with a thrilling 3-2 win at Real Madrid on Sunday.

Messi had broken a three-year goalless drought against Madrid to cancel out Casemiro’s opener for Madrid in the first-half.

Messi hits Barcelona 500 with last gasp El Clasico winner

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal with almost the last kick of the game to blow the La Liga title race wide open with a thrilling 3-2 win at Real Madrid on Sunday.

Messi had broken a three-year goalless drought against Madrid to cancel out Casemiro’s opener for Madrid in the first-half.

Messi hits Barca 500 with last gasp El Clasico winner

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal with the last kick of the game to blow the La Liga title race wide open with a thrilling 3-2 win at Real Madrid on Sunday.

Messi had broken a three-year goalless drought against Madrid to cancel out Casemiro’s opener for Madrid in the first-half.

Messi hits Barca 500 with last gasp El Clasico winner

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal with the last kick of the game to blow the La Liga title race wide open with a thrilling 3-2 win at Real Madrid on Sunday.

Messi had broken a three-year goalless drought against Madrid to cancel out Casemiro’s opener for Madrid in the first-half.

Messi double as Barcelona beat Real Madrid 3-2 in El Clasico

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal with the last kick of the game to blow the La Liga title race wide open with a thrilling 3-2 win at Real Madrid on Sunday.

A double from Messi and Ivan Rakitic’s stunning strike takes Barca top of the table, although Madrid still have a game in hand.

Messi double as Barcelona beat Real Madrid 3-2 in El Clasico

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi struck his 500th Barcelona goal with the last kick of the game to blow the La Liga title race wide open with a thrilling 3-2 win at Real Madrid on Sunday.

A double from Messi and Ivan Rakitic’s stunning strike takes Barca top of the table, although Madrid still have a game in hand.

Barcelona must rally around Lionel Messi to beat Real Madrid in Clásico

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A fair portion of the soccer world holds Lionel Messi to stratospheric standards.

Following on from the midweek UEFA Champions League matches, the Barcelona man’s performance in the 0-0 draw against Juventus was criticized in some quarters. He missed a fine chance in the first period, hooked over another in the second and, to cap off a frustrating night, fell flush on his face after a challenge with Miralem Pjanic.

AFP

Football: Icardi in, Aguero out for Argentina

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Buenos Aires (AFP) – Lionel Messi will spearhead Argentina’s attack against arch-rivals Brazil next month but there was no place in the squad for Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero.

Inter Milan forward Mauro Icardi replaces Aguero in a squad believed to have been chosen by Jorge Sampaoli, the Sevilla coach who is poised to take over Argentina in a bid to rescue their World Cup hopes.

Football: Icardi in, Aguero out for Argentina

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Buenos Aires (AFP) – Lionel Messi will spearhead Argentina’s attack against arch-rivals Brazil next month but there was no place in the squad for Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero.

Inter Milan forward Mauro Icardi replaces Aguero in a squad believed to have been chosen by Jorge Sampaoli, the Sevilla coach who is poised to take over Argentina in a bid to rescue their World Cup hopes.

Falcao, Coentrao in Spanish tax evasion lawsuits

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Madrid (AFP) – Spanish prosecutors said Tuesday they had filed lawsuits against Colombian striker Radamel Falcao and Portuguese defender Fabio Coentrao for allegedly hiding millions of euros in income from the tax office.

AS Monaco’s Falcao is suspected of failing to correctly declare 5.

Falcao, Coentrao in Spanish tax evasion lawsuits

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Madrid (AFP) – Spanish prosecutors said Tuesday they had filed lawsuits against Colombian striker Radamel Falcao and Portuguese defender Fabio Coentrao for allegedly hiding millions of euros in income from the tax office.

AS Monaco’s Falcao is suspected of failing to correctly declare 5.

Things get Messi for Iranian lookalike

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Tehran (AFP) – Iranian student Reza Parastesh looks so much like his sporting hero Lionel Messi that it almost landed him in jail for disrupting public order this week.

So many people came out to take selfies with Parastesh in the western city of Hamedan over the weekend that police rushed him into a station and impounded his car to stop the chaos and clear traffic.

Things get Messi for Iranian lookalike

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Tehran (AFP) – Iranian student Reza Parastesh looks so much like his sporting hero Lionel Messi that it almost landed him in jail for disrupting public order this week.

So many people came out to take selfies with Parastesh in the western city of Hamedan over the weekend that police rushed him into a station and impounded his car to stop the chaos and clear traffic.

FIFA lifts Messi four-game international ban

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Zurich (AFP) – FIFA on Friday overturned Barcelona star Lionel Messi’s four-game ban from international matches imposed for swearing at an assistant referee, saying there was not enough evidence to support the stiff punishment.

The U-turn is a major boost to Argentina’s hopes of reaching next year’s World Cup in Russia, with the South Americans struggling in regional qualifying.

Top scorer Cavani extends Paris Saint-Germain ‘love story’ to 2020

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Paris (AFP) – Star Uruguay forward Edinson Cavani has signed a two-year contract extension with Paris Saint-Germain until 2020, the French champions revealed on Tuesday.

“For Edi, it’s a passionate love story with the club, the fans and a city where he feels fantastic,” said PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi of the 30-year-old, PSG’s top scorer with 44 goals in as many matches this season.

The Rest

Reports: Leaked Documents Reveal Ezequiel Lavezzi Is The Highest Paid Player In World Football

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Photo: @gervinhofficial/Instagram

No wonder he's grinning fromoreja to oreja, for it's been revealed that Ezequiel Lavezzi is the highest paid footballer in world football.

According to the latest waveof football leaks from... err,Football Leaks, Lavezzi is currently raking in £798,000every sodding week while playing for the aptly named Hebei China Fortune.

2026 World Cup bid process revealed, Lionel Messi’s sick jersey collection, & more: Freedom Kicks for May 10, 2017

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The USA/Mexico/Canada joint bid hits a slight snag in today's Freedom Kicks.

Top of the morning folks! I'm back on the Freedom Kicks after a lengthy trip to Australia and Singapore. I'm back on Eastern time, somewhat caught up on rest and back in the saddle. In Europe, we have the 2nd Champions League semifinal between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid.

Lionel Messi's Goals against Real Madrid | Barca Images GIF

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Lionel Messi was instrumental in securing a 3-2 victory against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernebeu on Sunday. Here are the GIF animations of Messi's glorious nights.

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Lionel Messi maintains God status in El Clasico, D.C. United/Spirit/Kickers recaps & more: Monday Freedom Kicks

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A tremendous rivalry game and a bunch of local soccer for your reading.

What a trippy little game that was. Soccer, right?

Recaps of D.C. United's draw with the New England Revolution by us (with more from us here), MLS (with more from them here) and WaPo. The Bent Musket has things from the Land of Heaps.