La Liga

Messi smashes 46-year-old Pele record with goal against Valladolid

Lionel Messi has become the most prolific scorer ever for a single club after notching his 644th goal for Barcelona

 
11:23pm on Tuesday 22nd December 2020
By
Robin Bairner

Barcelona Lionel Messi has broken Pele’s mark of scoring 643 goals for a single club.

The 33-year-old scored his 644th strike for the Blaugrana in Tuesday’s Primera Division match against Valladolid to claim a record that had stood for 46 years.

The Argentine linked brilliantly with the flick from Pedri to slot into the back of the net after a game in which he had tried numerous efforts without success.

The 33-year-old has played the entire duration of his professional career with the Catalan side, having made his debut for the first team in 2004.

His first goal for the club arrived against Albacete in the La Liga on 1st May 2005, making him the youngest scorer for Barcelona at the time.

He quickly established himself as a regular for Barca and slowly saw his goal tally increase. His breakthrough campaign arrived in 2008/09, when he scored 38 times in 51 outings.

Messi went on to score at least 40 goals per season in the subsequent 10 campaigns, a run that was only broken last year when he scored 31 times in 44 matches.

Given such a prodigious scoring rate, it is little surprise that Barca have been wildly successful with him in their side, winning the Primera Division 10 times and picking up the Champions League on four occasions.

Messi, meanwhile, has won the Ballon d’Or on a record six occasions.

Pele, meanwhile, is one of the game’s legendary figures. He turned out for Santos and the New York Cosmos during a playing career that spanned 21 years.

It was while playing in Brazil that he enjoyed his greatest club success. Unlike Messi, Pele absolutely exploded onto the scene as a 15-year-old, scoring at the rate of more than one goal per game in his debut 1957 season.

Pele managed nine successive seasons in which he scored more than 40 goals, including a personal best of 64 in 48 matches.

Pele, who uniquely won three World Cups for Brazil, did not have the opportunity to win the Ballon d’Or, which was initially open to only European-based players, while the FIFA World Player of the Year was only introduced in 1991 – more than a decade after his career ended.

Latest news

Standings

La Liga Table: Atleti's miracle comeback deals blow to Barca

Atletico Madrid recovered from a seemingly impossible position to secure an incredible 3-2 victory over Valencia

  • 13 hours
Premier League

Premier League Table: Man Utd move into the top four with West Ham win

Marcus Rashford fired Manchester United into the top four of the Premier League at the expense of West Ham on Saturday

  • 13 hours
Predicted XI

Defensive crisis continues - How Chelsea could line up against Tottenham Hotspur

Thomas Tuchel's Chelsea side will be without a number of key defenders when they take on Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday

  • 1 day
Predicted XI

Fati injured - How Barcelona could line up against Alaves

Ansu Fati picked up an injury in the recent defeat against Athletic Bilbao and will be unavailable for Barcelona

  • 1 day
Predicted XI

How Liverpool could line up against Crystal Palace

Liverpool are still missing key players Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane for the game against Crystal Palace

  • 1 day
Predicted XI

No Xhaka or Partey? How Arsenal could line up against Burnley

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will be without a number of key players for his side's test against Burnley in the Premier League

  • 1 day

Most read