Messi writes another chapter in Barcelona's history but Pedri offers hope for the future


The Argentine broke one of Pele's records in a 3-0 win at Real Valladolid but his link-up play with a teenage team-mate was of greater significance

It was a nice moment for Barcelona.


Lionel Messi surged into the area before coolly placing the ball past Jordi Masip and into the back of the Real Valladolid net. History made, again: 644 goals for the same club, one more than the great Pele managed for Santos.


How many more will follow? It's hard to know. Messi's future at Barcelona remains a mystery.


As he revealed in an earth-shattering interview with Goal last September, he wanted out in the summer, disgusted with the way in which Josep Maria Bartomeu had run the Catalan club into the ground.


Bartomeu has since been forced out, of course, and Messi admitted earlier this week that he had put his frustration and disappointment behind him.


"Today, I'm fine and I feel like fighting seriously for everything we have ahead of us," he told Jordi Evole.


He certainly didn't look like a man who had lost his motivation in Tuesday night's 3-0 win at Valladolid. Messi was once again integral to everything positive that Barca produced.


He had 11 shots on goal, seven of which hit the target. He only scored once but was only denied a double by the post in the dying seconds. However, there were also three key passes as he passed and probed all evening.


He teed up Clement Lenglet for the opener midway through the first half before then demonstrating his incredible vision and outrageous passing ability in releasing the excellent Sergino Dest to cross for Martin Braithwaite, who made it 2-0 in the 35th minute.


Messi's record-breaking goal, then, merely capped what was a fine all-round performance for a Barca side that looked better balanced and more defensively solid in a 3-4-3 formation.


However, what was arguably most significant about that second-half strike from a Barcelona perspective was Messi's reaction.


He didn't run off to bask in his own glory. He immediately turned and pointed to the provider, Pedri, who had put Messi in on goal with a sublime backheel.


It was deserved acknowledgment for a player who just continues to wow. Of course, one is always reluctant to place too much pressure on a player who only turned 18 a month ago, but the kid can play.


He's small, he's slight, but it doesn't matter, not when you can read the game like this. As Lenglet said afterward: "Pedri doesn't have the physique of a top-level athlete, so he plays with his head."


In every sense, too. He's not only intelligent, he's composed too. He made more key passes (five) against Valladolid than anybody else.


Barca really do seem to have a generational talent on their hands, the kind of player you could build a new team around.


For now, though, it's just fantastic to see him learning from and linking with Messi, who, tellingly, seems to have a real affection for and affiliation with his teenage team-mate.


The Argentine only further cemented his place in Barcelona's history on Tuesday night but, amid all of the doom and gloom at Camp Nou, Pedri offers hope of a brighter future.


Maybe Messi thinks so too. Maybe that point wasn't just a nice moment for Barca. Maybe it could also a significant one...


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