Messi plays like a teen - coach

2012-12-11 20:48
Lionel Messi (AFP)

Madrid - One of Lionel Messi's key strengths is that his approach to the game is the same now as it was when he was a teenager, his Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova said of the record-breaking Argentine on Tuesday.

Now aged 25 and voted World Player of the Year the past three years, Messi set a record for the most goals scored in a calendar year of 86 on Sunday, surpassing the previous best of 85 set by German Gerd Müller in 1972.

"Messi's great virtue is that he is still playing now as a professional the same way he did as a youth player," Vilanova, who coached Messi when he was in Barca's academy, told a news conference previewing Wednesday's King's Cup last-16 first leg game at second division Cordoba.

"His career, what he has achieved, nobody could have predicted it," Vilanova added.

"I loved and enjoyed watching him play back then and now at this age too. I hope it continues for a good deal longer."

Messi can add to his 2012 goals tally in the Cup game at Cordoba and Barca have another two La Liga games, at home to Atletico Madrid and away at Real Valladolid, before the end of the year.

He is likely to smash plenty more scoring records before the end of his career and with 192 goals is already Barca's all-time leading scorer in La Liga and ninth overall behind top marksman and former Athletic Bilbao forward Telmo Zarra on 251.

Top scorer in the Champions League the past four seasons, Messi has 56 goals in Europe's elite club competition, joint-second with former Manchester United striker Ruud van Nistelrooy and 15 behind former Real Madrid forward Raul.

He also has Gabriel Batistuta's record haul of 56 goals for Argentina in his sights, having already scored 31 for his country.

Read more on:    barcelona  |  lionel messi  |  soccer

Depay reveals EPL struggles

2015-10-07 14:34


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

Most Read


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

LIVE: Springboks 54-0 USA
No England contact for White
Boks: Coenie ‘worst dresser’
Think Tank: Why are the minnows so much better?
/World Cup
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


Take a photographical trip down memory lane and remind yourself of how the Springboks fared in their five previous Rugby World Cup campaigns. In addition, pick your all-time Springbok Rugby World Cup Dream Team and you could win R3 000!

Latest blogs

Who was the best summer signing in the EPL?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.