llaix Moriba says his first Barcelona goal is too sweet to be forgotten in a hurry after opening goal account in the team’s 2-0 defeat of Osasuna on Saturday.
Ilaix, 18, scored Barca’s second goal with seven minutes to go to seal victory as Ronald Koeman’s side cut the gap on La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid to just two points.
The midfielder, who joined the club’s academy in 2010, only made his professional debut in January and was making just his fifth appearance for the senior side.
“I like to shoot,” Ilaix told reporters after the game. “Thanks to God, [Lionel Messi’s] passed me the ball and I don’t know how I cut back, but then I shoot with my left [foot] and it’s a goal.
“I need a little time to take it all in. I will never forget it. I will take it to the grave with me. I just want to dedicate the goal to my dad, to my mum… and to all my family.”
Ilaix, who was born in Guinea but has represented Spain at youth level, is one of several youngsters to have been given a chance by Koeman.
He came through the La Masia academy at the same time as Ansu Fati, whose first Barca goal also came away against Osasuna last season.
“Ansu is like my brother, we’ve spent many years together,” Ilaix said. “I love him a lot, he’s family to me. I’m delighted to have scored my first goal in the same goal as him.”
Asked what advice Messi, who set up the goal, has given him, Ilaix added: “He’s said to me from the start: ‘You always have to the area. Get there and look for the goal.’ And today he gave me the pass and I’ve shot…”