10 Dec 2012

Messi sets record of 86 for goals in a year

11:29 am on 10 December 2012

Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has set a record for goals scored in a calendar year of 86 when he netted his second of the night in a Spanish top flight game at Real Betis, beating Gerd Mueller's 40-year-old record of 85.

The 25-year-old World Player of the Year earlier equalled the record when he scored in the 16th minute, then the Argentina star finished from a clever back-heel from Andres Iniesta nine minutes later with a sweeping shot that flew into the same corner of the goal.

Messi has netted 74 times for Barca and 12 for Argentina in 2012, beating Mueller's total for Bayern Munich and Germany in 1972.

He is the favourite to secure a fourth straight World Player award when the winner is announced next month.

The double took his tally in 15 La Liga outings this season to 23.