Leo Messi began the 2016/17 season unable to score from a free-kick but at the start of 2017, the Argentine has scored two in his first two games.

The first was against Athletic Club at San Mamés which served to halve the deficit in the 2-1 Copa del Rey last-16 first leg loss. And then, against Villarreal, in La Liga, he came up with the goods to rescue the team from defeat in the 90th minute, making it 1-1 with an unsavable effort.

With these two strikes, the first time that Leo Messi has managed two on the spin, the no.10 now has 25 free-kick goals to his name, just one less than Ronald Koeman. The Dutchman has scored the most in the club's history with 26 including that famous strike against Sampdoria at Wembley in 1992 which secured the club's first ever European Cup.

Specialist

It is now the eighth straight season in which Messi has netted at least once, with the first time coming in 2008/09, against Atletico Madrid in a 6-1 win. Since then, the number of free-kicks scored in each season are as follows.:

SEASON 08/09 09/10 10/11 11/12 12/13 13/14 14/15 15/16 16/17
GOALS 1 2 1 3 4 3 2 7 2

Sevilla, his favourite victim

Sevilla have been on the receiving end of four Messi specials. The last three were in the last season, when the Argentine scored two in the European Super Cup and once in La Liga. After Sevilla, three have been against Espanyol and Athletic Club, and two against Reial Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Deportivo and Almeria.

Celta, Villarreal, Betis, Dinamo de Kíev, Mallorca, Granada and Ajax complete the list of rivals who have conceded at the magical left boot of Leo Messi.