It feels like a standard 30+ yard free-kick is just as easy – if not easier – than scoring from the penalty spot for Barcelona forward Lionel Messi.
He netted his FOURTH free-kick of 2019 when he managed to find the top left corner against Liverpool on Wednesday night, a record so ridiculous that it feels almost wrong typing it.
So how does his record compare to his great rival, Cristiano Ronaldo?
The 34-year-old has achieved success in almost all of his ventures, scoring on a consistent basis in Premier League, La Liga and Serie A competitions, while picking up those five Ballon d’Or trophies along the way.
But despite all of his success in front of goal, one certain aspect of his game is far from polished.
Ronaldo has taken 16 free-kicks for Juventus since the start of the season and has failed from every single one.
In fact, his record is the second-longest run without converting based on players from the Premier League, Bundesliga, Serie A and La Liga.
Lionel Messi, on the other hand, has scored eight in the 2018/19 season alone, while Ronaldo’s netted his last free-kick for club 960 days ago in a game against Gremio on December 17th, 2017.
The Argentinian has netted 46 direct free-kick goals in his career, with 12 coming since the start of 2018 – that’s more than any other team in Europe’s top five leagues have managed.
Messi has perfected an iconic technique in years gone by, honing his craft day in, day out.
Barcelona teammate Sergio Busquets confirmed in December that Messi is just as consistent in training as he is in games: “Even training he keeps on scoring that high percentage of free-kicks.
“You can’t compare him to any player. He’s just the best.”
He proved that once again on Wednesday night as Barcelona prepare to travel to Anfield with a three goal lead, thanks to a brace from Messi and a first half finish from Luis Suarez.
Is Lionel Messi the best free-kick taker in the world right now?