Lionel Messi is back.
As if a wonderful goal against Getafe in the first leg of Barcelona’s Copa del Rey tie with Getafe last week wasn’t evidence enough of the Argentine’s recovery from a two-month layoff, he hammered home the point in the second leg on Thursday.
With Getafe again the victims, Messi ambled forward with the ball before surging into action. After dancing past one player, he surged through two more, before taking it past a stranded goalkeeper and turning the ball into the net from a tight angle. It was Messi at his very best and brought comparisons with his Diego Maradona-esque goal against the same opponents in 2007.
Messi certainly has a soft spot for Getafe. They must be sick of the sight of him.
Following a hamstring injury, Messi now appears to be fully refreshed after a year plagued by niggling muscle problems. And his goal provided a welcome boost for Barcelona after another of their stars, Neymar, went down with a worrying ankle injury in the first half of the match at the Coliseum Alfonso Perez in Madrid. The goal put Barcelona 2-0 up in the tie and 6-0 up on aggregate.