The best product La Masia has ever produced is the Argentine Leo Messi who made his debut under Frank Rijkaard. The football world was well aware of the damage he could cause with his skills and goal scoring abilities. But what came to light was his intelligence. Leo is not only a dribbler but he is a technical genius as well who uses his skills, visions and intelligence all together which makes him unstoppable and unique. In his entire career, he has netted the ball 515 times for both club and country. Such a remarkable number is not easy to achieve and requires technique along with ability. Here are Lionel Messi top 10 smart ways to create space to score goals. Even though he requires a very little space to shoot, he still creates space out of nowhere using the following techniques.
FC Barcelona is a team which plays passing football, and tiki-taka is a trait of club’s youth academy La Masia. Leo Messi, who belongs to La Masia academy, knows how to use Tiki-taka to create space. He passes the ball to any of the available team-mate to position himself in a goal scoring position. And gets a one-touch return pass in a position where he doesn’t have much difficulty.
Short height and fast speed make Leo Messi a player with a high agility which is the reason for his extraordinary dribbling skills. He changes direction as quickly as a Flea and leaves the defenders looking to him on the other side. This gets him 1-on-1 with the goalkeeper.
Ball controlling is something that Leo Messi is the master of. His first touches are enough to give him sufficient space to settle on the ball and strike.
Lionel Messi is a clinical finisher by nature. He doesn’t use very much power in his shots. He rather relies on technique. Fake shot provides space as the defending team attempt to block the shot and so he gets off his marker. All the rest he has to do is put the ball in the net while the opposition is busy recovering balance.
Before striking the ball, Leo chips the ball over the goalkeeper after getting away from the defending line. This usually puts him in a situation where he has the ball and an empty net. And Leo doesn’t seem to be a player that will miss an empty net.
A dispersed defending line is the best chance for scoring a goal. Usually, when a team has the ball in their half, other players are away from goal in order to build-up. Although he is weak, but Leo has a very keen eye on spotting a defender that he could dispossess. Until the defender recovers his balance, Leo is already near to score the goal.
They say “If nutmeging is an art, Leo Messi is the Picasso of it.” Leo seems to feel delighted and enjoy nutmeging other players. But this also provides him space. In a congested space near the goal, nutmeging a defender could provide plenty of space. Leo does the same.
This one is quite funny actually. Leo uses his crazy dribbling skills to confuse defenders and crash into each other. By the time players recover their balance it’s already too late.
Teams facing Messi should know that he is too intelligent to become a prey of offside traps. Whenever he starts in an offside position, he doesn’t even try to approach the ball. And waits for a team-mate to get on the ball. By the team his team-mates drag the ball near the goal, Leo is there waiting for a tap-in.
Lionel is seen carrying out this set-piece very rarely, mostly in his early days. This one is a set-piece routine where Leo is available behind the wall to receive the ball. Wall is busy stopping the shot while Leo scores spectacularly.