Copa del Rey

Messi looking to maintain streak against Sevilla in Copa clash

In 2004, at the age of 16, Leo Messi put four past Sevilla in 15 minutes in a junior game. The Barcelona captain has 37 in 40 games in official competition.

Messi looking to maintain streak against Sevilla in Copa clash
MARCELO DEL POZO REUTERS

Leo Messi does love playing against teams from Seville. Last Sunday the Barcelona captain bagged his 26th goal in 24 games against Real Betis in a 3-2 victory and on Wednesday he will travel with Ronald Koeman’s side to the Sánchez Pizjuán to face Sevilla in the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey.

No single side has suffered more at the boots of the Argentinean than Julen Lopetegui’s team, against whom Messi has scored 37 goals in 40 games in official competition. His love affair with the Sevilla nets began when he was still a youth player at Camp Nou: in 2004 at the age of 16, Messi scored four in 15 minutes in a junior Copa del Rey tie.

Messi was rested by Koeman for the match against Betis, the captain coming on just before the hour mark and scoring the equalizer a couple of minutes later before providing a key pass in Betis’ own goal, scored by Fabián Ruíz, to put Barça 2-1 up.

Sevilla on a roll ahead of Barcelona visit 

Koeman will be looking for something similar in the Sánchez Pizjuán against a Sevilla side who have won their last seven games in all competitions while conceding just a single goal.

The six-times Ballon d’Or winner has played five games against Sevilla in the Copa del Rey, winning four and losing once. Across those matches he has scored only twice but has provided six assists including two in the 2016 final in the Calderón as Barça won 2-0 to lift the trophy.