Lionel Messi staked his claim as the all-time greatest alongside Cristiano Ronaldo as the only other active football player to score 700 goals, just 28 goals lesser than the Portuguese legend. The 33-year-old Argentinean scored a brilliant Panenka from the spot to beat Atletico Madrid’s Jan Oblak, to help his side in front for the second time that night. However, Saul Niguez converted a second penalty to equalize and add pressure to Barcelona’s title defense.
Twitter was ablaze since then, with many top footballers showering their praises. Former Barcelona player Gary Lineker, who is a big fan of Lionel Messi, quickly joined in the praises for the legend.
Messi, with a Panenka penalty, scores his 700th goal. Might as well do it in style.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) June 30, 2020
Messi chipped in a penalty to reach another astonishing milestone at Camp Nou but twice Atletico hit back with spot-kicks of their own, Saul Niguez converting both after Barca took an early lead through Diego Costa's own goal.
The result gives Real Madrid the chance to move four points clear at the top of the table if they can overcome Getafe at home on Wednesday, a formidable lead with five games left.
Atletico stay third, two points ahead of Sevilla, who won 3-0 at Leganes.
With a superior head-to-head, it would take a dramatic capitulation for Real Madrid not to lift the trophy from here but there is no guarantee Barcelona can finish strongly enough even to create pressure.
And this is how the world reacted to Messi' brilliance:
Cristiano Ronaldo is 35-years old.— Football Tweet (@Football__Tweet) June 30, 2020
Lionel Messi is 33-years old.
Tonight, Cristiano scored his 728th career goal with a THUNDERBASTARD.
Messi scored his 700th career goal with a cheeky Panenka against the best GK in the world.
Appreciate their greatness while it lasts. 🇵🇹🇮🇹 pic.twitter.com/QUr6J3KU61
🐐 | 7️⃣0️⃣0️⃣ goals for Lionel Messi!— Kick Off (@KickOffMagazine) July 1, 2020
👤 861 games
⚽️ 700 goals
🎯 320 assists
Certified legend. 🤩 pic.twitter.com/jRv2z6Tcan
Welcome to the #700 club King 👑 Lionel Messi— Sen Petr Hills (@20thdisciple) July 1, 2020
I remember telling a friend that the 7th person to join the 700th club would end up become the greatest ever.
Coincidentally, it happened on the night of the 7th month.
Keep breaking records. #Messi700 pic.twitter.com/2bT0hzoDML
Lionel Messi has 700 goals without being an out and out striker 🙆🏻♂️🤯🤯— Edmund 💉 (@EdmundOris) June 30, 2020
For a player who is as selfless as he is prolific, to still be able to score 700 goals is utterly ridiculous.
He’s the greatest footballer we’ll ever witness 🐐
Lionel Messi the youngest in history to score 700 career goals— El futuro ♛ (@iz_Shamo) June 30, 2020