King of Kings: The Best Soccer Player of the Century
From the legendary Pele to the great Maradona, famous soccer players and the highest-paid players ever have emerged as the face of football in the 20th century and early 21st century. However, the careers of the best footballers that captivated fans were nearing an end, The rise of a new no. 1 soccer player in the world signalled a new era in the sport.
No other generation in football history has seen as much rivalry for the century’s best player as this current one. Among the many footballers who may be considered candidates for the title of the century’s finest player, one outstanding sportsman named Lionel Messi is always at the forefront of the discussion.
Who is Lionel Messi
There isn’t much else to say about Lionel Messi, arguably the best player of this century and perhaps on his way to becoming the greatest player of all time. The long list of achievements performed by the Argentine is well-known and discussed millions if not billions of times.
He has the most goals in a season, a calendar year, and he holds the most goals in Catalan derbies and El Classico derbies. Messi is the all-time leading scorer for his squad at Barcelona and La Liga’s all-time top scorer and league record holder for assists.
Like Maradona, Messi is known for his low centre of gravity, dribbling ability, and scoring pedigree. He’s an absolute master on the field. People consider him the greatest footballer ever, and it’s difficult to argue against that. During his entire professional career with Barcelona, he has scored 614 goals while winning 34 trophies, including 10 La Liga titles and four Champions League crowns, as well as many other records and honours.
In 2021, he was crucial to his country’s Copa del Rey victory and yet again won the Ballon d’Or. The former Barça player has now won the Ballon d’Or for the world’s best player, a record seven times! (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2019, 2021). Messi’s record-breaking exploits on the field will continue as he now plays for Paris Saint-Germain in France.
Reasons Why Lionel Messi is the Century’s Best Player
One important note, we’re not suggesting any player is the sure-fire greatest of the century. Still, we’re stating facts that would make any football fan think about who qualifies as the greatest footballer of this century.
1. He is a great goal and assists machine.
Lionel Messi is called the Goal Machine, and he’s living up to the name. In La Liga, Messi holds the record for most goals with 423. Messi also holds the mark for most goals scored in a season, having scored 50 in one year. Messi also holds the record for most hat-tricks scored by a player in Europe’s top club competition, the UEFA Champions League (eight), as well as being its leading scorer.
Messi has scored 13 goals in the Copa America tournament, which is the most for any South American player. Aside from his goal tally, Messi is the current La Liga player with the most assists, having amassed 173. He’s also Argentina’s all-time leading scorer, having hit over 68 goals throughout his career. Messi has scored 831 goals in 831 games for Barcelona and Argentina.
2. He has numerous trophies from both club and national teams.
Not just goals, but also trophies have come Messi’s way as a creative footballer. From the start of his professional career, Messi has shown that he is the future of football. After winning his initial La Liga title in the 2004/05 season, Messi went on to win nine more titles, bringing his total in La Liga to ten.
Messi has also won the UEFA Champions League crown four times, three UEFA Super Cup victories, and he has lifted the Spanish Super Cup and Spanish Cup eight and six times, respectively. Messi has also won the FIFA Club World Cup three times.
3. He is drench in individual laurels but a natural team player.
Lionel Messi has amassed a slew of individual honours throughout his career, making him one of the most distinguished players in the 21st century. He won the FIFA Ballon d’Or four times and once each for the Best FIFA Men’s Player and World Player of the Year. Earlier, he was named Best FIFA Men’s Player. He was also the best player at each edition of the UEFA European Football Championship, and every year, it has taken place since 2002. He also holds 15 records for scoring in different competitions.
Furthermore, as a youngster entering the world of professional football, Messi has worked with some of the greatest players in the game, and he has gotten to know them well on the field. He played great soccer with Samuel Eto’o, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, and Ronaldinho while a kid in Barcelona. He subsequently formed an incredible trio with Andres Iniesta and Xavi, who finished third for the 2011 FIFA Ballon d’Or.
4. He scores high-quality goals and has excellent adaptation skills.
Aside from scoring goals, the players’ type of goals gives a sense of their calibre, and it’s no different with Lionel Messi. One of his most iconic goals came in 2007 when he scored against La Liga opponent Getafe. Lionel Messi dribbled his way from the middle of the field to achieve an incredible goal that is still talked about today.
Also, the career of many promising players has frequently come to an end after the arrival of a new manager, but in Messi’s case, it has been an exception. Messi has maintained his best form under previous Barcelona coaches Pep Guardiola, Luis Enrique and Ernesto Valverde. He also collaborated with Ivan Rakitic once Iniesta and Xavi departed from the team.
5. He is the ironman of the football world.
When he departed, Messi had already passed Pelé in Barcelona club history for most career appearances (778) and was second to Maradona in terms of goals scored. Very few players will play that many games during their careers, much alone for one of the world’s best clubs. That longevity and consistency are astounding. Messi has revolutionised the game of football.
Even at the international level, Messi has shined. He almost achieved global glory in 2014, 2015 and 2016, but small margins kept him from winning with Argentina. Nonetheless, he was still named the best player at the 2014 World Cup and eventually captured international silverware in 2021 when La Albiceleste last won the Copa America – he, of course, was a driving force.
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