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Messi vs Benzema: The Pichichi duel in El Clasico

Messi vs Benzema is El Clasico's fierce Pichichi duel to watch

December 16, 2019 By Ali M.
They are the joint-top scorers in La Liga, netting 12 times each ahead of Wednesday's highly-anticipated encounter.

El Clasico is right around the corner and while this fixture is no longer headlined by the rivalry between Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo due to the departure of the latter in 2018, there is an interesting competition brewing up between two players.

It's between Leo and the man who has inherited the goalscoring burden at the Bernabeu, Karim Benzema. The Argentine and Frenchman are in the midst of a heated Pichichi race and Wednesday's clash could shape things up.

Both men are tied on 12 goals each heading into this fixture, with Benzema netting his 12th strike of the Spanish Primera Division in their most recent fixture – a 1-1 draw with Valencia. The Frenchman has been in inspired form this season and as pointed out by AS, he alone has directly won the club eight points in the league alone. 

Overall, the former Lyon ace has 16 goals in 21 appearances in all competitions but in La Liga alone, he averages a goal every 108.8 minutes and has five goals from his last five league appearances. Furthermore, he has five assists under his belt which is just one off the best tally so far this season.

Messi, due to his injury woes at the beginning of the season, boasts a superior minutes-per-goal ratio. As per Transfer Market, the six-time Ballon d'Or winner averages a goal every 75 minutes, scoring 12 times in only 11 appearances. Despite missing quite a few games, the 32-year-old is back in the running for the Pichichi race.

And remember how we mentioned Benzema is second in the assists chart? La Pulga is the joint-leader with six, level with Valencia's Rodrigo. Messi will fancy his odds of scoring but given the club's horrendous defense, the same is true for Benzema. It will be interesting to see who will outdo the other in Wednesday's highly-anticipated showdown.

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