MADRID: Lionel Messi reached a brand new landmark Saturday by scoring his 643rd objective for Barcelona, equalling the file held by Pele for objectives recorded for a similar membership, however who’s soccer‘s best marksman?
Messi’s newest achievement got here within the 2-2 draw with Valencia when the 33-year-old headed in from Jordi Alba’s cross after his first-half penalty was saved.
It equalled the mark set by Brazilian nice Pele for Santos earlier than he left for New York Cosmos in 1974.
Messi’s objectives have are available 748 matches, a median of 1 each 1.16 video games; Pele’s got here in 757 matches at one each 1.17 video games.
“These figures are spectacular, we are going to by no means have a participant so efficient at this membership,” admitted Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman.
“That is why he’s the primary. What he has accomplished for this membership, it is spectacular.”
Hardly ever does a season go by when Messi is not forcing soccer’s historical past books to be up to date.
On July 1, in a 2-2 draw with Atletico Madrid, Messi scored the 700th objective of his skilled profession — membership and internationals mixed — with a intelligent ‘Panenka’ penalty.
Greater than 15 years have handed since Messi opened his objective account with Barcelona.
It was on Could 1, 2005, in opposition to Albacete in La Liga in a 2-0 win.
Nevertheless, his love affair with Catalonia soured in August this yr when he threatened to go away.
He’ll nonetheless be free to stop on July 1, 2021 on the finish of his present contract.
In all, he has 680 objectives in 801 appearances with Barcelona, if objectives scored in ‘unofficial’ matches are additionally counted.
The six-time Ballon d’Or winner is comfortably the membership’s main scorer, forward of Cesar Rodriguez’s 230 objectives, in addition to within the historical past of the Spanish Championship.
His 450 objectives are forward of outdated rival Cristiano Ronaldo’s 311.
Messi additionally has gained essentially the most titles with the Catalan membership — 34, together with 4 Champions Leagues.
Matching Pele’s file on Saturday has a robust resonance for the Argentinian star, coming simply three weeks after the demise of his compatriot and fellow icon Diego Maradona.
“There’s and shall be just one. There shall be a number of princes, however just one King,” stated a mischievous Pele when requested in regards to the present crop of superstars in March this yr.
Later Saturday, Pele, now 80, congratulated Messi.
“Such as you, I do know what it is like to like sporting the identical shirt daily,” he wrote on Instagram.
“Tales like ours, of loving the identical membership for therefore lengthy, will sadly turn into rarer in soccer. I like you very a lot, Leo Messi.”
Pele nonetheless has unique rights on different data — for now.
With between 757 and 767 objectives scored in official matches all through his profession, Pele remains to be forward of Messi (714) and Ronaldo (756) within the whole variety of profession membership and nationwide staff objectives.
Pele claimed greater than a thousand objectives by together with all of the matches he performed, official or in any other case.
Nevertheless, if simply official matches are the measuring stick, even the Brazilian remains to be behind Austrian and Czechoslovak striker Josef Bican, who scored 805 objectives in his profession which spanned three many years.