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Barcelona star Lionel Messi cleared over tax fraud case

Prosecutors have dropped their tax fraud case against Lionel Messi. Credit: PA

Spanish prosecutors have cleared Barcelona star Lionel Messi of wrongdoing in a tax fraud case, but have called for the arrest of his father.

The Argentine footballer had been expected to stand trial in relation to unpaid taxes totalling more than €4 million (£3m).

A Spanish judge recently rejected an appeal filed by the player's lawyers to drop the Barcelona star from the case.

Prosecutors are still seeking an 18-month prison sentence for his father, Jorge Horacio Messi, for allegedly defrauding Spain's tax office in unpaid taxes from 2007 to 2009.

In the documents made public on Tuesday, prosecutors also called for a fine of €2 million (£1.5m) for the father of the Argentina playmaker.



Lionel Messi scores 400th goal for Barcelona

It's 400 not out for Lionel Messi. Credit: Reuters

Lionel Messi scored his 400th career goal for Barcelona to round off a nervy but vital 2-0 win over fourth-placed Valencia to keep the Catalans top of the Primera Division.

The Argentina superstar scored with the last kick of the game after Luis Suarez had opened the scoring inside the first minute, but impressive Valencia were unlucky not to take more from the game, with Dani Parejo passing up an opportunity to equalise in the first half from the penalty spot.

Barcelona made it to half-time unscathed, though, and then produced a solid second-half performance to take the three points and inflict only a second league defeat of 2015 on their opponents.

The win keeps Barca two points clear at the summit ahead of Real Madrid, who responded with a victory of their own over Malaga later on Saturday, although not without a cost as both Gareth Bale and Luka Modric went off injured.

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