Lionel Messi expressed his delight at scoring a landmark 50th goal for Argentina but was keen to stress the team contribution in Tuesday’s 2-0 World Cup qualifying win against Bolivia.
Gabriel Mercado scored the opener to make it two goals in as many games having netted in the victory over Chile and captain Messi made sure of the points with a 30th-minute penalty.
Messi is now just six goals behind his country’s record goalscorer Gabriel Batistuta, but the Barcelona superstar says the important thing is that Argentina secured a win that leaves them third in the CONMEBOL section, two points adrift of Uruguay and Ecuador after six matches.
“This [campaign] is very long and what’s important is that we won and remain on course,” Messi told TyC Sports.
“I’m happy with goal number 50 but more because we won and this helps to keep growing.”
Having helped Argentina to six points over the international break, Messi is now focused on Barcelona’s challenge for honours and particularly Saturday’s mouth-watering Clasico against Real Madrid.
He added: “I had no physical problems and now is time to return to Barcelona to think about the Clasico, which will be a very demanding test.”
Barcelona are nine points clear at the top of La Liga with only eight matches of the season remaining, with Real Madrid currently third in the table behind city rivals Atletico Madrid.
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