Friday, May 24

Valencia hold woeful Barcelona

As Barcelona lost more points with a 2-2 draw against Valencia, Lionel Messi equaled Pele’s all-time record of 643 one-club goals.

Valencia took the lead through Mouctar Diakhaby’s header in the half-an-hour mark, but Messi pulled Barca level deep into the stoppage time of the first half. The referee pointed to the spot in the 45th minute after a push on Antoine Griezmann in the box. The foul gave Valencia captain Jose Gaya a red card and Barcelona to go 1 up in the game.

After consultation with the VAR, however, he downgraded the card to a yellow one. Messi stepped up but saw the goalkeeper Jaume Domenech save his penalty. Valencia struggled to clear and Messi was on hand from close range to head home his historic target.

Prior to a short and memorable spell with the New York Cosmos, Pele netted 643 goals with Brazilian side Santos. Thanks to Ronald Araujo’s acrobatic end, Barca took the lead on 52 minutes. But the home side were pegged back on 69 minutes as Maxi Gomez levelled for Valencia.

Koeman has put his faith in a number of young players this season. Pedri, Oscar Mingueza, Sergino Dest and Araujo have all been used, but he said the team’s lack of experience was affecting their results. The result leaves Ronald Koeman’s side eight points adrift of leaders Atletico Madrid, who have played a game less.

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