Lionel Messi has rewritten history and redefined standards throughout his extraordinary career, but his personal accomplishments in 2012 were absolutely remarkable – even for him.
Messi has won more in other seasons. For example, the 2011/12 season was one of the few 2010s that Barcelona are not won La Liga, while he won the Champions League in 2011 and 2015 but not in 2012 – the Catalans were beaten by weaker side Chelsea in the semi-finals.
There were also no tournaments with Argentina that year, while his only team title was the Copa del Rey with Barça. But on a personal level, no one has ever been or will ever match what Messi has done.
He scored 91 goals in the calendar year… ninety-one! 79 for Barcelona and 12 for Argentina.
In 2017, Harry Kane was lauded for scoring 56 goals for club and country in 12 months. That in itself is an absurd feat for a goalscorer at the pinnacle of power, but still nowhere near Messi.
When most world-class strikers are praised for scoring 40 goals, Messi lift bar. His career alone has set new expectations worldwide at the highest level.
Over the 2011/12 and 2012/13 seasons, Messi’s incredible form in 2012 contributed to him scoring a total of 73 goals in the previous game and 60 goals in the following season. His final tally in the 2011/12 season was 50 goals, a La Liga record and a European Golden Shoe win record.
Even Cristiano Ronaldo at his absolute peak could never match Messi’s unbelievable 2012 numbers. Messi himself has never gotten over it, insisting that it’s incredible.
Nowhere else could the Ballon d’Or be reached that year. It also comes as no surprise that Messi passed over 40% of the total votes from the original shortlist of 23. Though Ronaldo also had a stellar year – the best of his career at the time. – it’s not too close.
That golden ball was the fourth of Messi’s career and a record moment in itself. It saw him surpass the previous record of three awards first set by Johan Cruyff in the 1970s and later compared to Michel Platini and Marco van Basten in the 1980s and 1990s respectively.
Messi equaled the record in 2011 at the age of 24 and theoretically the best years of his career are still ahead of him. That’s totally true because 2012 broke everything.
https://www.90min.com/posts/ballon-d-or-2012-the-year-lionel-messi-broke-football?utm_source=RSS Ballon d’Or: 2012 – The year Lionel Messi broke football