Argentina captain Lionel Messi on Sunday scored his side’s first goal against Mexico to equal Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo’s FIFA World Cup goal tally.
During Qatar 2022’s second Group C fixture at the Lusail Stadium, the Paris Saint-Germain luminary put the Albiceleste ahead with a grounded left-footed strike from outside the box in the 64th minute which beat Mexican goalkeeper Ochoa to find the bottom right corner.
The Argentine is now also tied with Ronaldo on another front. Both players have now won seven Player of the Match awards, the maximum number of times for a player in the tournament. Arjen Robben of Netherlands sits second with six.
The 35-year-old, competing in his 21st World Cup match, also equalled the legendary Diego Maradona’s record for most World Cup appearances by an Argentine player on November 27 (IST).
Additionally, Messi has now scored the second most goals for Argentina in a World Cup, sharing the feat with Maradona and Guillermo Stabile.
Lionel Messi, coming into the 2022 World Cup had six goals in 19 matches, which increased to eight in 21 after his spot-kick against Saudi Arabia in Argentina’s opening match and the stunner against El Tri. Ronaldo has as many in 18 World Cup appearances.
Messi has now scored in six consecutive internationals, matching his own feat from a decade ago.
Messi is already the Argentine international with more caps (167) and more goals (93) than any other player in the nation’s history. He has also made more assists than any other player for the South American nation.