|Lionel Messi celebrating goal against Celtic
It was a marvellous night of football at the Camp Nou on Tuesday as FC Barcelona defeated Celtic 7-0 in their UEFA Champions League group C encounter to kick off their campaign with the best possible start.
Neymar inspired the Catalans to the win, registering four assists and one goal while Luis Suarez grabbed a brace and Iniesta scored one. However, it was Messi led the goalscoring spree as the Argentina captain grabbed a hat-trick against the Scottish Champions, the three goals he scored broke five records in the Champions League. Here are the 5 records Messi achieved with his three goals against Celtic.
FIVE RECORDS MESSI BROKE WITH HATTRICK AGAINST CELTIC
1. MOST HAT-TRICKS IN THE HISTORY OF UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
Messi opened the scoring for Barça as early as the 3rd minutes, he grabbed his second 14 minutes later and completed his hat-trick in the second half which meant he overtakes Cristiano Ronaldo, Alfredo Di Stefano and Ferenz Puskas as the player with most hat-tricks in UEFA Champions League/European Cup history.
These three players have five hat-tricks each to their name, but Messi now has six to his name and surpassed them after putting the ball in the back of the net from Suarez pass. The hat-trick is Messi’s 36th in his Barcelona career, his 40th including Argentina.
2. MOST NUMBER OF SEASONS IN WHICH A HAT-TRICK WAS SCORED IN
Messi’s hat-trick against Celtic meant the star man has scored at least one hat-trick in 5 different UEFA Champions League seasons, no other player in the competition’s history has scored in more than three.
Lionel Messi scored hat-tricks against Arsenal in 2009/2010 (where he netted four), against Victoria Plzen in 2010/2011, against AC Milan in 2010/2011, against Bayer Leverkusen in 2011/2012, against APOEL in 2014/2015 and now against Celtic in 2016/2017, an astonishing 21 goals in the six games he scored in.
3. MOST UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GOALS IN A SINGLE STADIUM
A records previously held by Real Madrid legend Raul who scored 46 goals at the Santiago Bernabeu, however, that record is now Messi’s after the game against Celtic as the player’s hat-trick meant he now has 47 goals at Camp Nou, now one more than Raul.
Raul has retired from football so the only active player close to him is Cristiano Ronaldo who has scored 41 at the Bernabeu.
4. MOST GOALS IN UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP STAGES
Messi’s hat-trick now makes him the player with the most goals in UCL group stages, netting 50 times, he is joined by Cristiano Ronaldo who also has 50 goals to his name, however, it is amazing to not that Messi did it in 53 games while Ronaldo needed 67 games to achieve it (14 games more), Messi is the first player to reach that number.
5. MOST UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE OPENING GAME GOALS FOR FC BARCELONA
This is a club records. The hat-trick Messi scored meant the he is now the player with most goals in the opening games of the season, netting 11 opening day goals. Kluivert is his closest rival with 5 strikes and he’s retired a long time ago. Messi is also the player to have scored in most CL opening day games, netting in 5, coach Luis Enrique netted in 3 games during his time as a Barça player.
It is no longer news that Lionel Messi is now at the stage where he breaks at least one record with every goal. He is the best ever and we all need to enjoy him while we can.