Although there are many facets to Lionel Messi's game, his goalscoring frequency is up there with the very best in the history of the game. His record in the Champions League is typically staggering, and over the last decade the Argentine and his chief rival Cristiano Ronaldo have consistently raised the bar by which others are measured.
Lionel Messi reached 100 career Champions League goals with his brace in Barcelona's Round of 16 second leg victory over Chelsea, and he reached the mark at a quicker rate than his great rival Ronaldo. So, how has he gone about his business in Europe's premier club competition? We delve into the numbers behind his success:
- Messi has scored at least six Champions League goals for 11 consecutive seasons.
- The Barcelona man's most prolific campaign was 2011-12 (14).
- Messi shares the record with Cristiano Ronaldo for the most goals scored by a single player in the group stage (60).
- The Argentine has also notched more goals in the Round of 16 than any other player (24).
BY PITCH AREA
- Two-thirds (67.0%) of Messi's Champions league strikes have come from inside the penalty area (not including 6 yard box goals).
- Just over a fifth (20.0%) have been scored from inside the 6 yard box.
METHOD OF GOALS
TYPE OF GOALS
- 86.0% of Messi's goals have come from open play, whilst he has reached double figures from the spot.
- Surprisingly, Messi has only scored three free-kicks in his Champions League career.
- Messi has been just as dangerous in the first half as the second half of Champions League matches, scoring 49 times before the break and 51 after.
- Messi's two most prolific time periods are at the end of each half, although it should be noted that these segments include injury time.
- Messi has never featured in a Champions League match that has gone to extra-time.
NATIONS SCORED AGAINST
- Clubs hailing from 16 different nations have been on the receiving end of a Messi goal in the Champions League.
- English and German teams have been notable victims of Messi over the years, with the Argentine scoring past clubs from those nations 20 and 16 times respectively.
TEAMS SCORED AGAINST
- In terms of specific clubs, the Barcelona frontman has been on the scoresheet against 29 different opponents.
- Messi has scored at least five times against six different clubs in the Champions League, three of those being British.
- His nine career goals against Arsenal is the joint-most (with Ronaldo) against any one club in the Champions League.
GOALKEEPERS SCORED AGAINST
- Messi has scored past 43 different goalkeepers in the Champions League.
- Bernd Leno and Christian Abbiati have the unfortunate distinction of conceding the most goals to Messi (seven).
- 22 different players have assisted Messi in the Champions league.
- Andres Iniesta has been his most frequent supplier, with the Spaniard teeing up Messi for 13 goals in the competition.