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Messi celebrates his first against Màlaga / PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB

Who said that Messi wasn’t on form? The Argentinian genius showed his quality in Málaga tonight and he equalled another record: at the Rosaleda he scored his 15th hat-trick as a Barça players -his fifth this season- to close out the first half of La Liga, in which he scored 22 goals. He’s equalled the historic record set be César, who also scored 22 goals in the first half of the 1950/51 season. Simply put, Messi is a goal-scoring machine.

Four goals more than last year

Furthermore, he’s scored four more goals this season than he did last year (at this point in 2010/11 he had 18 goals) and seven more than two years ago (15 goals). Until now, Messi had only scored one goal away from the Camp Nou this season, it was at San Mamés.

36 goals this season

In total, this season Messi has scored 36 goals in 32 official matches: 22 in the Liga, 6 in the Champions League, 3 in the Spanish Super Cup, 2 in the Cup, 2 in the Club World Cup and 1 in the European Super Cup.

As a Barça player, he has scored 216 official goals for the team. He’s only 19 adrift from the all-time Club top scoring record, currently held by César (235).

Messi: "the most important thing is winning"

Far from turning the attention on himself, tonight’s man of the match against Málaga, Leo Messi, preferred to talk about the team’s collective achievement: “more than personally scoring goals, the most important thing is to win. Málaga is a great team and every match is difficult, even more so when you are playing away from home. In the second half we played really well.”

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