• La Liga

Messi breaks Pele's scoring record

ESPN staff
November 12, 2012 « Moyes: Fellaini can leave for right price | Chartbeat test »
Lionel Messi became the second highest ever goal scorer in a single calendar year with a brace at Mallorca © PA Photos
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Lionel Messi has become the second highest goalscorer in a calendar year after scoring a brace in Barcelona's win over Mallorca to take his 2012 tally to 76.

Messi, 25, has scored 64 goals for Barcelona and 12 for Argentina so far this year, helping him surpass Brazilian legend Pele's tally of 75 goals. Gerd Muller is ahead of Messi with 85.

The Argentine has more than 300 career goals and is currently La Liga's top scorer having found the net 15 times in 11 matches this season.

Messi scored Barcelona's second and fourth goals on Sunday to help fight off a resilient Mallorca side that was able to pull two goals back against the league leaders.

Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova praised Messi's goalscoring prowess, insisting they are not all easy chances.

"Leo continually breaks records. His goal tally is spectacular," Vilanova said. "It takes other great players seven or eight seasons to score the amount of goals he scores in one season. Also, some of his goals are absolute beauties."

Despite scoring four goals, Vilanova was openly disappointed at the 'slightest errors' that are costing Barcelona. But midfielder Cesc Fabregas believes it is not an issue given the strength of Barca's attack.

"Mallorca scored its goals through isolated plays - a defensive error and a penalty," he said. "These things happen. The team's reaction was positive and we managed to score the fourth goal without letting our nerves get the best of us."

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