Since Lionel Messi was young, there was something special in his style of play. He made his debut for the first team in 2004/05 season and got promotion to the first in the next season. In 2005/06 Messi made 25 appearances for FC Barcelona and scored a total of 8 goals. It was the rise of the great Lionel Messi. Since then Messi has been consistent and the main man for the club. Many players joined the club and left, but Messi remained constant along with other Catalan legends like Xavi, Puyol, and Iniesta. During this whole time till 2016, he has been an integral part of all the attacking trios that the club had. There has been a total of 6 great Barcelona trios and one Messi the greatest who stood at his place playing at the peak of his powers for so long.
Ronaldinho, the extraordinary talent from Brazil, was Barcelona’s main man before Messi. He was brought to the club in 2003 from PSG and still possess a special place in the hearts of the crowd of the Camp Nou. Samuel Eto was another player who played alongside Ronaldinho and was signed from Mallorca in 2004.
After Lionel Messi rose to the first team, the 3 together formed a deadly trio and led the club to Champions League glory. Ronaldinho played a role of playmaker and supplied chances to Lionel Messi and Eto. The 3 Barcelona man scored 207 goals in 4 seasons since 2004/05 till 2007/08.
Pep Guardiola signed as Barcelona manager in 2008 after being promoted from the B team. He immediately got rid of Ronaldinho and Deco, and Messi was made the focal point of Barcelona’s attack. Thierry Henry came to the front and the trio became one of the best. All 3 went on to win the first treble for Barcelona in 2008/09 season. The 3 scored 100 goals in a single season in all competition. Messi rose to his full potential in the season, providing moments of brilliance and rising to the occasion when needed the most.
In 2009, Barcelona signed Zlatan Ibrahimovic for a hefty fee and Samuel left joined Inter Milan. The rise of Pedro minimized the playing time of the French hitman Thierry Henry, and he scored only 4 goals in the whole season. Zlatan showed a promising start at Barcelona but was held down due to unstable relations with the coach Pep Guardiola. Messi demanded the central position in attack due to which Zlatan couldn’t perform to the best of his abilities. 3 of them were the main men in Barcelona’s attack in 2009/10 season, winning Club world cup and a domestic double. The 3 players reached a goal tally of 91 with Messi contributing 47 of them.
David Villa moved to the club in 2010 while Zlatan Ibrahimovic left for AC Milan. The 3 together were at their peak in the season 2010/11 when Barcelona won it’s 4th Champions League title and a Liga title, only missing out on Copa Del Rey. The season also recorded the glorious 5-0 victory over Real Madrid. They scored a total of 98 goals in the season and won numerous trophies. After the champions league winning season, Pedro and Villa lost their form and Lionel Messi was the only potential goalscorer present.
One of the greatest trios in the history of football, Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta. The three passing masters have same origin as they all are La Masia graduates so they have same football philosophy. Xavi and Iniesta, although, were midfielders and didn’t use to score many goals, but were passing masters. The linkage of these 3 was what made them great. Altogether they can open up almost every defensive force through their passing, vision, and intelligence.
In 2013 Barcelona bought the Brazilian star Neymar Jr to replace David Villa Sanchez who moved to Atletico Madrid. One year later Alexis Sanchez left to join Arsenal and so Luis Suarez was signed. Suarez took time to settle at the club and adapt to the style of play of the Catalans, but once he was on the go, the 3 became unstoppable together. These 3 link up in an extraordinary manner and are carrying Barcelona’s attack on their shoulders and have won 7 trophies in just 2 seasons together. Messi has evolved as a playmaker and is the main supplier of chances to Suarez and Neymar. The 3 South Americans scored 253 goals in just 2 seasons. These are incredible stats, and not only stats, the chemistry between them is extremely mesmerizing to watch and the damage they can do in seconds is beyond repair. This is the greatest trio in the history of football.
1. Ronaldinho, Samuel Eto and Messi:
2. Samuel Eto, Thierry Henry and Messi
3. Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Messi and Pedro Rodriguez
4. Messi, Pedro and Villa
5. Messi, Xavi and Iniesta
6. Messi, Suarez and Neymar