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Move over Gerd: Messi now European single-season goal scoring champion

May 2, 2012, 4:10 PM EDT

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel M Getty Images

And, of course, if came via a hat trick.

Lionel Messi scored three goals today against Málaga, pushing his single-season, all-competition goal total to 68 – a new European record. His first, on 35 minutes from the spot, evened up being the game winner, and after a record-tying tally from the spot, Messi set the new standard with a nice piece of skill over Carlos Kameni.

The previous high of 67 was set by German icon Gerd Müller in 1972-73, whose 36 goals in Bundesliga play were augmented by 19 in domestic cups, seven in Europe.

Here are their breakdowns by competition (keep in mind, Messi has two more Primera matches and the Copa del Rey final):

Lionel Messi (2011-12, Barcelona)

Gerd Muller (1972-73, Bayern Munich)

source:  source:
Competition Games Goals
Spanish Primera Division 35 46
Copa del Rey 6 2
Champions League 11 14
Spanish Supercup 2 3
UEFA Super Cup 1 1
Club World Cup 2 2
Competition Games Goals
German Bundesliga 33 36
DFB-Pokal 5 7
DFB-Ligapokal 5 12
European Cup 6 12


Here’s the tape via some industrious YouTube user. The third one’s a peach. The first two Messi goals are just spot kicks:

And some Gerd Muller, featuring some thigh talk:

  1. jcf78 - May 2, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    Can’t score against Chelsea

  2. billobrienschindimple - May 2, 2012 at 8:23 PM

    But few, if any ever will challenge the absolute class of Gerd’s southern highway.

  3. slxc - May 2, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    Messi is spectacular.

  4. quadassio - May 2, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    Still won’t win Ballon D’ Or.

    • Richard Farley - May 2, 2012 at 11:00 PM

      Good one.

  5. rainer1962 - May 2, 2012 at 10:51 PM

    Check your pictures before you post, that is not Gerd Mueller, but Paul Breitner! And I’d still take Mueller!!

    • Richard Farley - May 2, 2012 at 11:00 PM

      You’re so right! That’s completely my fault! I searched for Mueller, got a bad ID tag and didn’t double check it. I’m glad you said something – quite an embarrassing lapse.

    • Richard Farley - May 2, 2012 at 11:06 PM

      There … muuuuuch better.

  6. footballer4ever - May 5, 2012 at 3:48 PM

    Messi is just a Grandiose footballer(emphazis on “G”) and not many people keeps in mind he’s 24 y/o soon to be 25 on June 24. The many years he has left in him, health & lord willing, we are honored and bless to see him work his magic and to be witness of such masterwork he showcases when he is on the pitch.

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