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30 stats for Messi's 30th birthday


B team's promotion to second tier offers peek at future for Barcelona

New Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has suggested he is ready to work closely with the B team.

BARCELONA -- The football season finally came to an end in Barcelona on Sunday when the B team clinched promotion to the second tier of Spanish football. Gerard Lopez's young side sealed their place in Segunda A with a 4-1 aggregate win against Racing Santander.

Does this mean we have a new generation of La Masia talent?

Not necessarily. There was a lot of debate last season when a number of players who had come through the academy were allowed to leave to facilitate the arrival of players who...

 By Chris Wright

Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates 30th birthday with three cakes

It only seems like yesterday he came bursting onto the scene as a floppy-haired young player, but Lionel Messi turned 30 on Saturday.

The Barcelona icon spent his big day at home with the family, quietly celebrating with his partner, Antonella Roccuzzo, his young sons, and not one, not two, but three cakes!

Terminando el cumple 😉😉😉 muchísimas gracias a todos por los saludos .. 👍👍👍

A post shared by Leo Messi (@leomessi) on

That sound you hear is Barca's club nutritionists making a slew of worried phone calls.

Painstaking fitness and diet regime be damned -- when you're Messi you can have as many birthday cakes...

30 stats to celebrate Lionel Messi's 30th birthday

In honour of Lionel Messi's 30th birthday, take a look at what he's accomplished so far and what he has left to chase down.
Gab Marcotti discusses Chris Jones' editorial on Lionel Messi and his impact on the footballing world.

As the world celebrates Lionel Messi's 30th birthday, ESPN Stats & Information presents a list of facts and figures for his amazing career on the pitch with Barcelona and Argentina.

- 30 titles won with Barcelona in all competitions.

- 29 career goals vs. Sevilla are his most against any single opponent.

- 28 La Liga goals in 2013-14 (Barcelona lost only twice in matches in which he scored).

- 27 career goals in friendlies with Argentina.

- 26 career La Liga hat tricks.

- 25 years...

Messi at 30: 30 things you may or may not know about Barca's famous No.10

Gab Marcotti discusses Chris Jones' editorial on Lionel Messi and his impact on the footballing world.
Lionel Messi spoke to ESPN about his future at Barcelona and a possible move to China.
Former Barcelona president Joan Laporta believes Lionel Messi is the best of all time and has more natural talent than Cristiano Ronaldo.
Lionel Messi ranks third on ESPN's World Fame 100 rankings, but which footballer tops the list?

Lionel Messi turns 30 Saturday. So here are 30 things about the Argentina and Barcelona legend.

Personal life  

1. Messi's birthday isn't the biggest thing happening to him this month: next week he will marry childhood sweetheart Antonella Roccuzzo in a ceremony in Rosario. All of his Barcelona teammates are invited. 

2. The Barcelona star already has two children with Antonella: Thiago (4) and Mateo (1). 

3. Like many modern-day footballers, Messi's body has become increasingly...

 By Sid Lowe

Andre Gomes had a rough start at Barcelona but boasts very bright future

With reports indicating Barca rejected a hefty bid for Andre Gomes, the FC panel debate the future for the young midfielder.

It was widely reported this week that FC Barcelona had turned down a €35 million bid for Andre Gomes, to which, let's face it, pretty much everyone's reaction was: You did what?!

When Barcelona signed Gomes last summer, sporting director Robert Fernández described it as "an opportunity the market had presented us with." Now, less than 12 months on, the market had presented them with another opportunity: to get rid again. And, given that they had paid €35m for Gomes (plus another...