The current world champion, Lionel Messi, has reached yet another milestone in an illustrious career where he has already broken a multitude of records. In a friendly fixture against Panama in the Estadio Monumental last Friday, Messi scored his 800th career goal from a beautiful free kick in front of a fully packed home crowd.
Messi and co., despite attacking vigorously, remained goalless in the first half. Thiago Almada found himself open after a rebound from Messi’s free kick in the 78th minute, which hit the post. He then calmly put the ball in the back of the net.
The seven times Ballon d’Or winner then stole the show with another free kick just outside the 18-yard box in the 89th minute. Panama goalkeeper Jose Guerra tried his best to reach the ball, but failed to stop it from going in.
With this goal, Lionel Messi joins the prestigious club of players with 800 club and country goals. He is the second player to reach this milestone after his rival Cristiano Ronaldo. Behind the top two is the legendary Brazilian Pele, who “only” has 762. Robert Lewandowski, with his 629 goals, is the closest active player in the race.
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What other records does Lionel Messi hold?
Lionel Messi has won the Ballon d’Or, the highest individual honor in the sport, more times than any other player in the history of the sport. He has been nominated for a record seven times for this title, and is now also the favorite to win the 2023 Ballon d’Or after his world cup heroics.
Lionel also holds a multitude of club and international records. Here’s a shortlist:
- Most Liga goals: 474
- Most Liga goals in a single season: 50 (2011/12)
- Most Liga hat-tricks: 36
- Most Liga titles won by foreign player: 10
- Most goals in calendar year: 79 in 2012 (91 including goals for Argentina)
- Most UEFA club competition goals for single club: 123 (Barcelona)
- Only player to score in World Cup group stage, round of 16, quarter-finals, semi-finals and final
- Youngest Argentinian to score at a World Cup: 18 years 357 days
- Most Argentina caps: 172
- Most Argentina goals: 98
Yeah, the list will keep going. All his records speak for his place as arguably the “greatest of all time.”
As Messi is nearing the final hours of his career, who knows what other records he will be breaking?