Another day another milestone… Lionel Messi has scored his 400th La Liga goal at the weekend after netting in a 2-0 win against Eibar. The Argentine has further extended his record as the top goal scorer in La Liga history as he now sits 89 strikes ahead of second top-scorer Cristiano Ronaldo. With Ronaldo’s move to Turin in the summer, Messi now holds an absurd lead on any other active player in La Liga for most goals. Athletic Club striker Aritz Aduriz is the next top active scorer, with 157 goals in 422 games. A remarkable feat for the aging Spaniard, but one completely dwarfed my Messi’s continued dominance in La Liga.
To look at this record closer, Messi has recorded his 400th goal in an absolutely astonishing 435 games, earning himself a whopping 0.92 goals per game ratio in the league. He has reached this feat in 63 less games than Ronaldo, given that the record spans across Europe’s top 5 leagues and he dwarfs the Premier League great Alan Shearer who stands in first at 260 strikes in Premier League history. Beyond La Liga, Messi’s strike against Eibar marks his 575th in all competitions for Barcelona.
Messi’s first La Liga goal came in 2005 against Albacete when he was just 17 years, assisted by none other than Barca legend Ronaldinho, in what is now seen as a passing of the torch type goal. His 400 goals have included 83 braces and 31 hat tricks. The left-footed menace has made opposition pay 326 with that foot, while recording 59 with the right, 14 with the head and a lone goal that bounced off his chest. Messi’s favorite opponent thus far has been Sevilla, netting 25 times against the fellow Spanish side.
Highlighted by an astonishing 2011-12 season that saw him surpass a record of tallying 50 goals in the league as he marched on to score 91 in all competitions, Messi has been totally dominant in Spain. With Barcelona Messi has claimed 9 La Liga titles amongst many other domestic and continental honors. Still going strong into his 30s now, it is time to cherish what time with have left with the four time Ballon D’or winner.
Written by: Andrew Diefenderfer