The Barcelona man was on the scoresheet again yesterday and has been in excellent form since the turn of the year.
Despite talk of a fallout with coach Luis Enrique and transfer rumours as a result, the South American star has been in scintillating form since the turn of the year.
Having been omitted from the Blaugrana’s starting XI for the first game of 2015, a 1-0 defeat to Real Sociedad, Messi has scored nine goals in seven games since.
The Barcelona man’s goal against Villarreal takes him to 22 for the season, but he still trails perennial rival Cristiano Ronaldo, who leads the Spanish goalscoring charts with an incredible 28 goals so far this term.
However, with the Real Madrid ace set to sit out Wednesday night’s clash with Sevilla due to being banned, Messi can close the gap further in his absence.
It is worth pointing out that Ronaldo has scored eight penalties as part of his tally compared to Messi’s one, meaning the Barcelona man has more goals in open play in La Liga.
With Ronaldo retaining the Ballon d’Or at the start of this year, the Barcelona man is clearly motivated to prove a point and certainly has started 2015 brighter than the Real Madrid star.