La Liga Results: Lionel Messi Hits 300-Goal Mark as Barcelona Maintain Lead; 10-Man Real Madrid Pickup Impressive Win

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Feb 17, 2013 11:06 PM EST
Lionel Messi Barcelona
Barcelona forward Lionel Messi celebrates after scoring against Granada in their Spanish League game, February 16"


Lionel Messi reached a landmark 300 goals for his club, as the Argentine superstar guided Barcelona to a 2-1 comeback victory, with Real Madrid also picking up three points despite being reduced to ten men for the majority of the game.

Messi netted an instinctive equalizer for his side in the 50th minute after Granada had taken the lead, before a brilliant freekick with just under 20 minutes to go handed the La Liga leaders all three points.

Messi, who has now scored an incredible 37 goals in La Liga this season, reached the 300-goal mark with his opener, before taking his all-time tally to 301 following the fantastic winner.

"Over 300 goals. It's extraordinary what Messi does," Barca assistant coach Jordi Roura told reporters.

"We had a lot of chances and didn't take them but he got two goals that are very important.

"He's broken another personal record. I don't think he had scored against Granada. I also think that his 301 goals in official matches is incredible."

Barcelona are now 12 points ahead of second-placed Atletico Madrid, after Diego Simeone's side posted a 3-0 victory over Real Valladolid - their first away win since Mid-November last year.

Radamel Falcao opened the scoring for his side, before Diego Costa and Cristian Rodriguez put the result beyond doubt.

At the Bernabeu, Real Madrid stayed 16 points off the pace with a 2-0 win over Rayo Vallecano, thanks to early goals from Alvaro Morata and Sergio Ramos, as Jose Mourinho made several changes following his side's exertions in the Champions League against Manchester United.

Ramos, after scoring, was sent off for a second yellow card in the 18th minute, but the two early goals were enough to take away all three points.

Morata, who made his first ever league start, was ecstatic to have contributed in Real's win. "I am very proud to be in this squad and play in matches like this," he said. "I am learning and I am in no hurry. I need to take it step by step.

"I didn't expect to be in the starting XI and when the coach told me it made me extremely happy. To start a match at the Bernabeu and score my first goal here is incredible."

Results: Espanyol 1-0 Real Betis; Real Madrid 2-0 Rayo Vallecano; Real Sociedad 1-1- Levante; Real Valladolid 0-3 Atletico Madrid; Valencia 2-0 Mallorca; Getafe 3-1 Celta Vigo; Granada 1-2 Barcelona; Malaga 1-0 Athletic Bilbao; Osasuna 1-0 Real Zaragoza.

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