Lionel Messi grabbed his 300th goal in La Liga as Barcelona beat Sporting Gijon 3-1 on Wednesday evening to move six points clear at the top of the table.
The Argentine only needed to wait 25 minutes to collect yet another milestone, curling the ball into the far corner from the edge of the box to put Barca ahead at the Estadio El Molinon.
Carlos Castro equalised for the hosts just two minutes later, tapping in a delightful cross, but Messi restored the lead in similarly hasty fashion, rifling the ball into the roof of the net to bag the 10,000th goal in the Catalan club’s history.
Midway through the second half, Barca were awarded a penalty which Luis Suarez stepped up to take despite Messi being on a hat-trick; the Uruguayan opted to shoot, not pass, but saw his effort saved by Ivan Cuellar.
He did net a few minutes later, however, curling a stunning left-footed effort in off the post to make amends for his earlier miss and guarantee a victory that sends Barca six points clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid.