Leo Messi’s legend knows no limits. After scoring a hat-trick at Deportivo on Sunday night, he has now claimed three or more goals in no fewer than thirty different games for FC Barcelona in La Liga, the Champions League, the Spanish Cup and the Spanish Super Cup.
His maiden hat-trick came against Real Madrid at the Camp Nou in a 3-3 draw in the 2006/07 league season. That was not the only time that Madrid were on the receiving end of a night of Messi magic. The Argentinian also scored three times in the 2013/14 campaign, this time at the Santiago Bernabéu in a memorable 4-3 win.
The two teams that have suffered most at the hands of Messi have been Osasuna and Valencia, who have seen him get trebles against them three times each. In addition to Real Madrid, other double victims of Messi hat-tricks have been Espanyol, Almeria, Atlético Madrid, Sevilla and Malaga. The Barça striker has achieved the feat against no fewer than 19 teams, including such European greats as Arsenal and Ajax, plus the famous three-goal spree that marked Barça’s comeback against Sevilla to win the Spanish Super Cup in 2010.
Leo Messi has sometimes gone even better than that. Against Valencia in a 5-1 win at the Camp Nou in 2011/12, and against Osasuna in a game at the same venue and that finished with the same score the season after, Messi scored four times. He did likewise in the Champions League quarter final against Arsenal in 2009/10. And not forgetting that amazing Champions League night against Bayer Leverkusen, when Barça won 7-1 and Messi became the first player in the history of the competition to score five goals in the same game.