Lionel Messi breaks Pele’s long-term record with another hat-trick

Lionel Messi-Argentina
Lionel Messi-Argentina

With his 55th career hat-trick, Lionel Messi went past yet another milestone in his glittering career. La Pulga‘s three goals in Argentina’s 2022 World Cup qualifier against Bolivia made him the highest scorer in South American history, surpassing Pele’s record of 77 goals.

Messi currently boasts 79 goals for La Albiceleste (from 153 matches), which puts him at the top of the scoring charts on both national and continental levels. His side’s recent victory over Bolivia places them comfortably in second place, six points behind the high-flying Brazilians. Meanwhile, struggling La Verde languish in ninth place, with just one victory out of nine games.

In his 153rd appearance for Argentina, the 34-year-old PSG forward netted his ninth hat-trick on the international front, leading his side to their fifth victory of the qualifying season. Lionel Messi scored in the 14th, 64th and 88th minute to etch another record to his name.

The six-time Ballon d’Or winner now stands clear of any other South American in terms of international goals. However, his longtime adversary Cristiano Ronaldo leads the all-time scoring charts in men’s international football by a long mile, with 111 goals in 180 games.

Under Lionel Messi’s leadership, Argentina will face Paraguay in their next qualifier on the 7th of October.