Lionel Messi Hits Two Perfect Free-Kick Goals vs. Espanyol

Francesc Rubi

Lionel Messi scored two free-kicks in a LaLiga game for the first time in his career as the Barcelona superstar set another personal landmark. A goal in each half with an assist in between saw the 5th best player in the world, according to France Football, break another La Liga record.

Messi scored two free-kicks as Barca won the Catalan derby 4-0 at RCDE Stadium, the first time he has achieved the set-piece feat in a LaLiga game.

Espanyol's fourth consecutive league defeat left them ninth in the standings, but they didn't stand a chance with Messi in this mood.

Dembele was the creator this time with a superb pass to Suarez, who slipped his finish through the legs of Lopez from a tight angle. The sublime effort gave Barcelona a 4-0 lead.

Substitute Philippe Coutinho was denied the icing on top of the cake by Lopez's strong left hand shortly after coming on, before one incident pretty much summed up Espanyol's night.

Barcelona were having all of the ball though, and the visitors made the breakthrough in the 17th minute when Messi curled a stunning long-range free kick into the top corner of the net.

Espanyol defender Oscar Duarte fouled the Barcelona playmaker 25 yards out in a central position.

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Barcelona have made one change for their clash with Espanyol on Saturday evening.

Hernan Perez headed over the crossbar late in the first period as Espanyol searched for a route back into the match, but Barcelona all but secured the points in the final minute of the first period.

"The alarm is that we have 21 points and we know how hard it is to have points in the league".

Lionel Messi celebrates against Espanyol (Joan Monfort/AP). Messi got up to send the resulting free-kick over the wall and into the top right corner.

In a rare moment of action in the Barcelona penalty area, Victor Sanchez's header dropped wide of the far post.

Espanyol looked for a way back in to the match as Duarte's downward header at the far post was blocked by Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

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