Lionel Messi loves breaking records.
He’s shattered so many throughout his illustrious career, and undoubtedly will be remembered as Barcelona’s greatest ever player.
One such record that is now in his possession is the most appearances for the Catalan giants in all competitions. His 768th appearance took him past Xavi on the club’s all-time list, prompting some in Spain to suggest there were simply no records left for the Argentine to shatter.
Well, as it turns out, that’s not strictly true. There aren’t many, granted, but seven remain for Messi to conquer before he hangs his boots up…
He might be the club’s all-time top scorer, but when it comes to goals in a single game, Messi is actually quite far behind.
The current record is held by the legendary Joan Gamper, who struck a ridiculous nine goals in one match… three times between 1901 and 1903.
Messi has got a long way to go before he gets anywhere close to that number. His current record is the five he bagged against Bayer Leverkusen in the 2011/12 Champions League last 16.
This one is a little more attainable. Hungarian forward Laszla Kubala put seven past Sporting Gijon, which is actually a La Liga record as well.
Messi’s personal best currently sits at four – a return which he has managed no fewer than five times.
Three of those four-goal hauls actually came within 12 months of each other. The first came against Valencia in February 2012, three months before the next against Espanyol, and he then went and put four past Osasuna in January 2013.
Messi might have the record for the most hat-tricks, but when it comes to the fastest triple, he’s lagging behind.
If he wants to snatch this record, he’ll need to strike three goals in less than the nine minutes Pedro needed when he tore apart Getafe in the 2013/14 season.
That’s a whole three minutes faster than Messi’s quickest hat-trick, which was spread out over 12 minutes against Rayo Vallecano in March 2015.
Sitting at the top of Barcelona‘s Copa del Rey goalscoring charts is Josep Samitier, who managed 65 goals in the competition between 1919 and 1932.
Messi might need a few more years at Camp Nou if he is to get this one. He’ll end the 2020/21 season with ‘just’ 54 Copa del Rey goals to his name, which is only good enough for second on the list.
If he wants to claim this record soon, he might need to break this next one as well…
Samitier is also the man to score the most goals in a single Copa del Rey season.
The Spaniard finished the 1927-28 season with a whopping 21 goals in the competition, helped by the fact that Barcelona actually played 17 Copa del Rey games that season.
Messi has never managed more than the seven he managed in the seven cup games of 2010/11, and given it’s impossible for Barcelona to play more matches in the current format, this one might be a stretch too far.
This record is not held by Samitier, but rather Eulogio Martinez, who bagged seven when Barcelona met Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey in 1956/57.
Messi has only ever managed three goals in one cup game, with his first coincidentally coming against Atletico as well in 2009.
He followed that up with hat-tricks against Real Betis in 2011 and Valencia in 2016, but Messi has a long way to go before he’s challenging Martinez’s record.
Now, Messi does actually hold this record. He has managed five goals at the Club World Cup, stealing the show in 2009, 2011 and 2015, but the problem is that he’s actually tied with good buddy Luis Suarez.
Suarez has only been to the tournament once, in 2015, but he bagged three in the semi-final and two in the final to tie Messi’s record.
If Messi wants this for his own, he’s going to need Barcelona to win the Champions League again. No biggie.