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Messi sets European scoring record with 68th goal

05-04-2012 08:36 BJT

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Barcelona hosted Malaga, with Barca’s Lionel Messi on the brink of history. And the hosts would open the scoring after 12 minutes, but it would be Carles Puyol getting the job done off the Andres Iniesta cross.

Malaga would level in the 26th minute when Jesus Gamez’s cross set up Jose Rondon who directed a diving header into the net - a solid finish from the Venezuelan import.

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi reacts during the Spanish league football
match FC Barcelona vs Malaga CF at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona. Barcelona's
triple Ballon d'Or-winner Messi broke Gerd Mueller's record for goals in a European
season here on Wednesday as he scored a hat-trick in Barca's 4-1 win over Malaga to
take his tally to 68. (AFP Photo/Lluis Gene)

The parity did not last long though, and after Iniesta was brounght down in the box only eight minutes later. Messi stepped up to take the spot kick, and made no mistake placing his shot into the bottom left corner to make it 2-1.

Barca took a stranglehold on the match after 58 minutes when Malaga gave away another penalty, this time for Sergio Duda’s challenge on Messi. The Argentinean picked himself up and once again, he converts from the spot. And that, ties Bayern Munich great Gerd Muller’s all time European record of 67 goals for the season.

And a new milestone would be set five minutes later when Iniesta’s sharp pass penetrated the visitors’ defence and Messi finished it off for the trick and the new European goal scoring crown. Messi’s three-goal night makes him the first man to score 68 goals in a season for a European top-flight club, breaking the record of Mueller set in 1972-73.

So, with two games remaining in the Spanish season, Real has clinched the crown while Barca will finish second and has clinched their berth in the Champions League for next season.

After that though, it’s a dogfight for the final Champions League berth and the places in the Europa League for next year. Right now, Valencia holds down the final automatic Champions berth with a three point lead on Malaga, while the gap between Levante in 5th and Sevilla in 10th is only six points.

 

Editor:Zhang Dan |Source: CNTV.CN

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