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Messi petitioned to let Mascherano take a penalty

An online petition has been started to ask Lionel Messi allow Barcelona team-mate Javier Mascherano take a penalty and score his first goal for the club.

Since arriving at Camp Nou in 2010, Mascherano has won 13 major trophies, including the Champions League twice, La Liga three times and the Club World Cup on two occasions.

However, despite making his 264th appearance for Barca in the 6-1 win over Celta Vigo on Sunday, the 31-year-old is yet to find the back of the net for the Catalan giants.

After Messi opted to use a penalty to tee up Luis Suarez for a hat-trick rather than convert his 300th La Liga goal for the club against the Galician side at the weekend, he is being called upon to show a similar level of generosity to his compatriot through an online appeal.

"We believe that Javier Mascherano does not have the recognition he deserves as a star player for Barca," a statement explaining the petition reads.

"He has given so much to the team we see it unfair he is not recognised as he deserves, as unfortunately in football everything is measured in goals and we want him to get a goal for the club.

"The easiest way is to enable it to take a penalty, and we ask Leo Messi to do this."