BARCELONA, SPAIN - MARCH 07: Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona (L) celebrates with teammates after scoring his team's fifth goal during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 second leg match between FC Barcelona and Bayern 04 Leverkusen at Camp Nou on March 7, 2012 in Barcelona, Spain. FC Barcelona won 7-1 and Lionel Messi scored 5 goals. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
Lionel Messi managed reach the incredibly high bar he's set for himself and impress even the most jaded with a five-goal performance in the Champions League.
It takes a lot for someone who is third all-time in Champions League goals and just seven goals away from becoming Barcelona's all-time leading scorer to shock people. When you are that incredible, greatness is expected and topping yourself is nearly impossible. Lionel Messi excels in the impossible.
Bayer Leverkusen will attest to the brilliance of Messi. After all, he just scored five goals against them, Germany's fifth best team who has allowed just 29 goals all year in the Bundelsiga, and he did it in Champions League action to boot. That would be in one single match and no, that is not a typo.
Let's dive into the history books for some context here. Messi became the first player to ever score five goals in a Champions League match. The last time anyone scored five in a European Cup was way back in 1980 and the five-goal mark has never been reached against a team in the latter rounds of the tournament against an opponent you have heard of and mildly respect.
Onto the moving pictures for video confirmation that Lionel Messi is actually a thing and not a myth, even if we cannot confirm that he is human.
Ah, so he's on the board. Impressive, but we have seen this before. He runs onto a ball over the top and beats the keeper. So he chipped him, big deal. All professionals can chip the keeper with ease (no they can't).
That would be one, two, three, four Bundesliga quality defenders that Messi beat with a fifth smart enough to realize that trying to stop the Argentinian is futile so he might as well just watch. After all, he has a great seat and the ticket was free.
There are two things that Victor Valdes is celebrating here: 1) "We scored and are on our way to the Champions League quarterfinals." 2) "Messi is on my team so he doesn't get to make me look foolish."
We've seen this one before, except with the other foot. Again, every professional player can easily chip the keeper with both feet (again, no they can't).
Really, guys? He's good enough. You really don't have to help him out, but seriously, how did the diminutive Messi make it through all of those much larger people?
It's adorable the way that billions of people around the world keep playing and watching soccer. What's the point of partaking in a game that's already been won? Yes, Messi won the sport. The end.