Fotomuntatge entre Messi i Falcao. FOTOS: ARXIU FCB I clubatleticodemadrid.com

Two goal-scoring machines, Leo Messi and Radamel Falcao face each other on Sunday evening(21.00), when second place Atletico Madrid visit the Camp Nou. The two lead the goalscoring table in La Liga with 23 and 16 after just 15 games – figures that reveal how important their goals have been for their two teams this campaign.

Messi usually plays as a false number nine, a position which allows him to drift deep and help in the build up, opening up the flanks as well as get himself into the box, whilst Falcao is a more traditional leader of the line, with a good shot from both feet. The Colombian has also scored some spectacular long range efforts and has truly blossomed into a super striker in his second season at the Vicente Calderón.

Both on fire

Messi has won the Ballon D’Or on three occasions, the Golden Boot twice and has also been the leading scorer in La Liga twice, as well as topping the scoring in the Champions League for four seasons. Falcao was the leading scorer in the Europa League for the last two seasons – first with Porto and last year with Atletico.

Both players are on fire right now – Messi has scored 15 goals in his last 9 games, scoring two goals in seven of those matches, whilst Falcao comes into the game on the back of five goals in Atletico’s 6-0 win against Deportivo last weekend.

Here are the stats for Messi and Falcao for the 2012/13 season:

 

  MESSI FALCAO
Games 15 14
Minutes 1350 1217
Goals 23 16
Goals at home 8 13
Golals away 15 3
Penalties 1 6
Free kicks 1 1
Shots 79 52
Shots against the woodwork 2 0
Fouls 6 24
Fouls received 35 26
Yellow cards 1 4
Yellow cards provoked 8 8
Assists 3 1
Successful passes 756 221
Dribbles 129 58
Lost possession 166 107
Possession recovered 13 21
Offsides 8 12