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Lionel Messi scores hat-trick in Argentina 7-0 win

InternationalFootballLionel Messi scores hat-trick in Argentina 7-0 win

Srinagar: Captain Lionel Messi scored hat trick as World Champions Argentina beat Curacao 7-0 on Tuesday.

Messi scored his 100th international goal for the world champions before ended night at 102 goals.

Seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi opened the scoring against the Caribbean Island minnows on 20 minutes.

It came 17 years after he opened his Argentina account in a 3-2 defeat to Croatia in March 2006. 

Messi soon added another just after the half-hour mark to make it 3-0, and then completed his hat-trick on 37 minutes with the fifth as Argentina toyed with their overmatched opponents. It was his seventh hat-trick for the national team.

Messi came into the game not just as his country’s all-time record goalscorer, but with more goals than the next two top marksmen — Gabriel Batistuta on 56 and Sergio Aguero with 41 — put together.

This was Argentina’s second match since winning the World Cup against France in Qatar in December — triumphing 4-2 on penalties after a thrilling 3-3 draw — and it was always going to be about Messi reaching 100 goals.

Now with 102, he remains third in the all-time list, behind great rival Cristiano Ronaldo (122) of Portugal and Iran’s Ali Daei (109).

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