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And Messi would slot home his second at the Camp Nou on Wednesday with a sublime bit of footwork and cool finishing.
Pedri won the ball before unleashing De Jong, who launched a stunning counterattack against Elche.
The 23-year-old Dutch midfielder beautifully dribbled his way into the box before picking out Messi with a superb pass.
Messi fooled Gonzalo with a fake shot before Raul Guti tried to intercept the ball from the Barcelona captain, only to find that he had skipped past him.
The six-time Ballon d'Or winner dinked the ball past a helpless Edgar Badia as he climbed to the top of the La Liga scoring charts.
Messi has scored 18 times in La Liga this season, putting him two ahead of former Barcelona teammate Luis Suarez.
Jordi Alba scored Barcelona's third as Ronald Koeman's side sealed all three points at the Camp Nou.
Barcelona are currently third in La Liga and are two points behind Real Madrid and five behind league leaders Atletico Madrid.
The Spanish side will return to action on Saturday as they travel to the Ramon Sanchez-Pizjuan for their clash with Sevilla.
Featured Image Credit: Premier Sports/Twitter
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