- The Argentine picked the ball up in his own half before driving at the defence, playing a neat give-and-go with Luis Suarez, and then curling the ball into the bottom corner.
- Atletico manager Diego Simeone described Messi's strike as a "golazo" and said, according to The Evening Standard: "With a great goal like that, all you can do is applaud."
- The goal, however, once again masked a lacklustre performance from the Spanish champions, who were dominated by the home side at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium.
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Lionel Messi scored a brilliant trademark goal to hand FC Barcelona a 1-0 victory over rivals Atletico Madrid on Sunday, once again covering up a lacklustre performance from the Spanish giant.
Atletico had controlled most of the play at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium up until the 86th minute when Messi waved his magic wand to break its hearts and hand Ernesto Valverde's side all three points.
Picking the ball up just yards into the opposition half, the Argentine first drove with power and pace at the Atletico defence, before cutting into the centre of the field and passing to teammate Luis Suarez, who had his back to the goal on the edge of the penalty area.
Suarez then teed Messi back up with a neat sideways pass, which the 34-year-old took full advantage of, curling the ball effortlessly into the bottom corner as he does so often.
You can watch Messi's stunner here:
Messi's goal was trademark. It felt like 100th of that type he has scored in his career, and it once again this season masked an indifferent performance from the La Liga champions.
Atletico dominated the opening proceedings in front of a capacity crowd at its home stadium, and was unlucky not to have found the opener just six minutes in when Miguel Hermoso was denied by the woodwork.
13 minutes later, Hermoso came close again, however it was keeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen who denied him this time, producing a fine save from close range to keep the deadlock intact.
Atletico's dominance continued into the second 45, with Ter Stegen again to thank for keeping things level, before Antoine Griezmann, who was making his first return to the Wanda Metropolitano since he left the club in the summer, had Barca's only real chance of the game. However, nerves appeared to get him as he fired wildly over the bar.
Fortunately for the Frenchman, it was Messi who came to rescue for his side in the 86th minute. His fine goal ensured a return to the top of the La Liga table for the visitors.
After the match, Atletico manager Diego Simeone said he was disappointed not to have come away with more given his side's performance, but conceded that there is little anyone can do to stop Messi when he turns on the style.
"With a great goal like that, all you can do is applaud," he said, according to The Evening Standard. "The move, when the counter-attack started, had the smell of great danger. He scored a 'golazo.'
"When [Luis] Suarez and Messi are in a dangerous situation, they rarely fail."
The goal was Messi's ninth of the season in La Liga, making him the division's second top scorer behind only Real Madrid's Karim Benzema.
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