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Let’s Talk About Lionel Messi’s Celebration After Winning El Clasico for Barcelona

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What motivated it? And where does it rank among iconic Clasico celebrations?

Real Madrid CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Lionel Messi. Sometimes you want to give context with superlatives and other times it feels redundant. So here are the facts: with a bloody mouth and a black eye, he scored a brace against Real Madrid, including a 92nd minute stunner to give Barcelona a 3-2 win in El Clasico.

Afterwards he removed his shirt, and displayed his name and number to the crowd. He kissed it as he walked off. He got booked, but I’m sure he didn’t mind.

Why did he do it? Did it have something to do with his renewal? Was it because he scored his 500th goal?

According to Sport, noooope. It was spur of the moment and just because he was emotional for scoring such a big goal in such a big game.

In any case, it’s a picture that will go down in history as another iconic Messi moment.

How iconic is it, by the way?

Well, recency bias is in effect here. For those that don’t know, recency bias is basically that you tend to give added meaning to things just because they are fresh in your mind. So maybe we have a bit of that going on now, but at the same time, how can this moment not give you feelings?

How does it compare to other iconic celebrations in the history of El Clasico?

For me, there is only one that sticks in the mind as a rival: Carles Puyol kissing the armband in Barcelona’s 6-2 win over Real Madrid in 2009.

He had made it 2-1 in what would eventually become a drubbing, one which propelled Barcelona to the league title. It wasn’t nearly as dramatic, but it was part of a treble-winning season.

Plus Puyol scoring. I mean come on.

I’m not going to decide which one is more iconic. I’ll say both are pretty amazing and leave it at that.