It came only about a year late, but this is the sort of beautiful, high-end link-up play that we expected from Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann when the Frenchman signed for Barca in the summer of 2019.
The unease at the club since the restart has been well-documented, with rumours that Messi wants to leave, but perhaps brilliant moments like this will settle a few nerves. It will be a much-needed boost for Griezmann’s confidence. I mean, what a gorgeous, weightless finish.
And for any talk of Messi’s standards slipping, he does now have 19 assists in La Liga this season (one shy of the all-time record, held jointly by Xavi and Thierry Henry), a personal best and perhaps a sign of the type of player he will become as he inevitably loses his physical cutting edge, i.e. more useful on the edge of his opponent’s box than driving into it to score.