Messi marks 700th Barcelona appearance with goal in win over Dortmund

Lionel Messi marked his 700th appearance for Barcelona in eventful fashion with a goal, two assists and a booking for diving in a 3-1 win over Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.

Messi’s 613th goal for Barca helped his side qualify for the last 16 by winning Group F, with the Argentinian also setting up Luis Suarez and Antoine Griezmann at the Nou Camp.

England forward Jadon Sancho scored a consolation for the visitors, who remain level on points with Inter Milan ahead of the final round of group games.

Dortmund are at home to Slavia Prague on December 10 with Inter Milan welcoming Barcelona to the San Siro.

Whether or not Messi is rested for that game remains to be seen, but the 32-year-old was in irrepressible form against Dortmund and set up Suarez to seemingly open the scoring after 22 minutes, only for the Uruguayan to be flagged offside.

Luis Suarez opened the scoring as Barcelona won 3-1
Luis Suarez opened the scoring as Barcelona won 3-1 (Joan Monfort/AP)

Griezmann then came off the bench to replace the injured Ousmane Dembele and Suarez broke the deadlock on the half hour after latching on to Messi’s pass and firing past Roman Burki.

Dortmund contributed to their own downfall four minutes later as Mats Hummels gave the ball away to Frenkie de Jong, who instantly found Messi and, after a quick exchange of passes with Suarez, the Argentinian beat Burki with a low left-footed shot into the corner.

Messi’s milestone appearance was marred somewhat by being booked for a dive after 51 minutes after going down in the area following a trademark mazy run, but that was soon forgotten when he set up Griezmann to make it 3-0 with a pinpoint pass.

Substitute Sancho pulled one back with a thumping shot beyond Marc-Andre ter Stegen after 77 minutes but it was too little, too late for Dortmund.

Football Paradise Staff Reporter

Serving quality football news from around the globe. No click-bait.