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A fan has attempted to "expose" Lionel Messi's ridiculous 91-goal year, branding it "overrated" and claiming he wasn't "decisive in big games".
In 2012, a 25-year-old Messi scored 79 goals for Barcelona and 12 for Argentina in 69 games across one calendar year.
Messi broke the previous world record of 85 goals in a calendar year set by Germany and Bayern Munich striker Gerd Müller 40 years prior and picked up his fourth consecutive Ballon d'Or for his stellar performance over the annum.
He scored more goals than Paris Saint-Germain, Borussia Dortmund, Manchester United and Chelsea, in addition to registering 29 assists.
ON THIS DAY: In 2012, Lionel Messi scored his 91st goal of the calendar year.- Squawka Football (@Squawka) December 22, 2019
A record he achieved in 69 games for club and country. pic.twitter.com/BMzGbKQY26
But @ZISPECIALONE_ reckons Messi's 2012 wasn't all that it was cracked up to be and made a number points trying to play down the Argentine's achievements.
For starters, the user believes Messi's tally of 13 goals in 12 Champions League outings - which included a five-goal masterclass against Bayer Leverkusen, shows that Messi was being carried by Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets.
Exposing Lionel Messi's Magical 91-Goal Year for Barcelona and Argentina- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
Thread : pic.twitter.com/TsPwY8yL8p
First off let's start with the CL campaign , Lionel Messi only scored 13 goals in 12 matches. This clearly proves that iniesta and xavi were carrying him in la liga. Busquets was also a key factor to carrying Messi and pulling the strings together. pic.twitter.com/ZxakxFTBty- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
They also pointed out that 78 of Messi's 91 goals were scored inside the box, which apparently means he was "a tap-in player" - while 14 penalties is deemed to be "stat-padding".
Not only did he have an underwhelming CL campaign during his " peak " but 78 of his 91 goals all came from inside the penalty box.This really exposes Messi's play-style as a tap in player and no work rate from outside the box.Unlike Cristiano messi could not change his playstyle. pic.twitter.com/N4vsLDLUny- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
14 goals from the 91 goals were penalties, during his best form he costed Barcelona the champions league by missing a decisive penalty. In la liga Messi scored all his penalties which was 10 this exposes his stat padding against weaker teams.- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
And his liability to clutch. pic.twitter.com/TvBY2Zh0Hh
'ZI' raised question marks over the teams that Messi scored a hatful of goals against: Six against Bayer Leverkusen and four against Levante, Osasuna, Rayo Vallecano, Real Zaragoza, Real Betis and Espanyol.
91 goals might seem like a impressive record but if u really take a look at the teams he played u would be surprised.- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
4 goals against osasuna , 6 goals against leverkusen , 4 goals against levante , 4 against vallecano , 4 goals against Zaragoza , 4 goals against real betis. pic.twitter.com/b5BulKATar
La liga teams Messi faced against , very weak relegation teams not including the UCL- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
: Real Zaragoza - 4 goals
: Rayo vallecano - 4 goals
: espanyol - 4 goals
: real betis - 4 goals
: malaga - 3 goals
As u can see a lot of goals from his incredible season is statpadd pic.twitter.com/cOgskLcQe2
Then there's the statement that Messi was in "Ronaldo's shadow" because he "disappeared" in El Clasico fixtures and couldn't stop Real Madrid from winning the league under Jose Mourinho.
Messi in big games during his prime season with the best midfield in the world- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
missed a device penalty to get knocked out in the UCL
Disappeared in Classico's which lead to Madrid winning the league
Scored 14 penalties in the UCL in his best year.
Put In Ronaldo's shadow. pic.twitter.com/XJAIb0kGy5
Cristiano Ronaldo's best UCL year- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
⁃2017 19 goals
⁃2015 16 goals
⁃2013 15 goals
Messi's best UCL year
⁃2012 13 goals with 14 pens , reminder without the 14 pens he wouldn't reach the 91 goals. pic.twitter.com/AYvhYQsirW
In conclusion Lionel Messi's 91 goal was a incredible record but he was not decisive in big games , statpadded against smaller teams and a lot of penalties. Simply overrated.- ZI (@ZISPECIALONE__) July 24, 2021
U could also argue about this ballon'dor being a robbery. pic.twitter.com/5QDNrnhvOO
In summary, the fan branded Messi's year "overrated" and said you could even argue that his Ballon d'Or win was not deserved.
Naturally, his thread has riled up a lot of people on social media, who have quite rightly dismissed it as nonsense.
The daftest take of all-time? It's certainly up there.
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