Soccerstoriesbook's Blog


THE ANIMATED MR. MESSI

Lionel Messi scored the first five-goal game in UEFA Champions League history to power FC Barcelona to a 7-1 second-leg rout of Bayer Leverkusen at the Camp Nou, lifting the defending champions to a 10-2 aggregate victory and a place in the quarterfinals.

Messi scored in the 25th, 42nd, 49th, 58th and 84th minutes, twice lobbing shots over Leverkusen goalkeeper Bernd Leno.  With the exception of his final goal, each of Messi’s precise, gentle shots could probably be clocked at about 20 mph.

The last five-goal outing in the competition came in 1979, during the old European Champions Cup, when Soren Lerby of Ajax ran wild in a 10-0 second-round hammering of Cyprus minnow Omonia Nicosia.  Messi’s performance against Leverkusen gave him 53 goals in 49 games in all competitions for Barcelona this season, including eight hat tricks.  [March 12]

Comment:  When the inevitable biopic of Messi is made, it should be an animated film.  On days like this, the 24-year-old Argentine genius turns soccer into a cartoon in which the defenders are reduced to Elmer Fudds.