Argentine professional footballer Lionel Messi, who played his 1000th match on Saturday, has left behind Diego Maradona and Cristiano Ronaldo in terms of scoring the most goals in the FIFA World Cup.
In the match against Australia in the pre-quarter-final clash, Messi scored a goal – his ninth in the World Cup – to lead Argentina into the last 16 of the World Cup. Furthermore, it was also the first time that Messi scored in the knockout stage of the FIFA World Cup.
As per the current standings for the FIFA World Cup 2022 Golden Boot – which is awarded to the highest goalscorer in the tournament – Messi is second with three goals in four matches. Spain’s Alvaro Morata continues to top the Golden Boot competition with three goals in three matches.
Messi also won his eighth Man of the Match award at the World Cup and went past Portugal star Cristiano Ronaldo, who has seven trophies in the quadrangular showpiece. Messi surpassed Ronaldo on another front with his ninth World Cup goal, surpassing Ronaldo’s tally of eight goals. This is one more than Diego Maradona.
Diego Maradona played for Argentina between 1977 and 1994 and scored 34 goals. Messi, playing in his fifth World Cup, has said that this will be his last and winning the trophy will be all the more important if he is to match Maradona’s legacy.
In the 35th minute of the match against Australia, Messi fired a shot past keeper Matt Ryan, his third ever goal in Qatar. Messi, 35, already Argentina’s all-time top scorer with 94 goals, was making his 169th appearance for his country.
With this, Messi also became Barcelona’s top scorer with 672 goals in 778 games. However, he moved to Paris Saint-Germain last year. Overall, he has scored 789 career goals. Julian Alvarez doubled Argentina’s lead in the 57th minute and confirmed their victory against Australia in the FIFA World Cup 2022.
After the game, speaking to the media, Messi mentioned this special achievement and said that he was grateful for it. “I’m very happy to have taken another step forward, to have scored another goal,” Messi said.
“It was a very strong and tough match – we knew it was going to be this way. We didn’t have much time to relax and we were worried because we knew it was going to be a physical match and They were very strong.”
Argentina will now take on the Netherlands in their quarter-final match on Saturday, 10 December.