Lionel Messi Breaks Pele’s Record With 644th Barça Goal

Lionel Messi became the all-time top scorer for a single soccer club on Tuesday after scoring his 644th goal for Barcelona during their La Liga match against Real Valladolid, surpassing Pele’s record goal haul for Brazilian side Santos.

The 33-year-old Argentine, who matched Pele’s mark of 643 goals with a strike against Valencia on Saturday, scored the third goal in the 65th minute as Barca won 3-0 at Valladolid.

Messi created the first goal when his cross was headed in by Clement Lenglet and started the move for the second, finished off by Martin Braithwaite.

Messi also hit the post in injury time.

Pele scored 643 goals in 665 competitive games for Santos, while Messi needed 749 matches to break the record, although he did it in 17 seasons compared to the 19 the Brazil great needed.

Pele, now 80, made his Santos debut aged 15 in 1956 and left in 1974 after winning six Brazilian league titles plus two Copa Libertadores crowns, South America’s European Cup.

Messi, who made his first appearance for Barcelona aged 17 in 2004, has won 10 La Liga titles with the club plus four Champions League trophies.

Reacting to his feat, Messi wrote on Instagram: “When I started playing football, I never thought I would break any records. Especially the one I broke today which was Pele’s. I can only thank everyone who’s helped me all these years: my teammates, my family, my friends and everyone who supports me everyday.”