“Lionel Messi is currently the best in the world”, said Brazilian legend Rivaldo. Just a few days after, Messi justified Rivaldo’s statement by scoring a goal in El Clasico against Real Madrid FC at the Santiago Bernabeu on December 23. It was Barcelona’s second goal which made the Argentine the highest goal scorer of 2017. Indeed, it was the best way to bid adieu to the year.
Though he conceded the FIFA Ballon d’Or to Cristiano Ronaldo, his performance throughout the last 12 months was no less than terrific. Let’s take a look at Messi’s achievements this year:
1. Trophies won in 2017 — Copa del Rey
The solitary trophy won by Messi and Barcelona was the Copa del Rey in January 2017. Barca defeated the Alaves by 3-1.
2. Individual awards
After ending his 2016-17 season, the 30-year-old Lionel Messi turned to score the most number of goals in La Liga. With 37 goals in 34 appearances, he bagged the La Liga Top Scorer of the year award. He went on to grab the European Golden Shoe for the fourth time in his career and later, won the FIFA FIFPro World XI.
3. Number of goals scored in 2017
The Barcelona and Argentine ace topped the list with most number of goals in 2017. He scored a total of 54 goals and surpassed Ronaldo’s tally of 53 after scoring his last goal against Real Madrid in El Clasico.
|Competition||Games Played||Minutes Played||Goals|
|Copa Del Rey||7||630||5|
|World Cup qualifying||5||450||4|
4. 15 goals at Santiago Bernabeu in Classicos
Most number of goals by any footballer at this stadium (Real Madrid’s home ground) in history. Several media reports state that this venue is going to get a new name soon but Messi is still the undisputed ruler here.
5. Most goals against Real Madrid
Messi holds the record of scoring most number of goals against Real Madrid. He is well ahead of Los Blancos legends Alfredo di Stéfano (18 ) and Ronaldo (17) who scored against Barca.
With so many feathers in his cap, Messi is all set for the 2018 FIFA World Cup which is going to be held in Russia. Argentina lost the finals in 2014 to Germany and once again, under the captaincy of Messi, they would eye on the world title once again.