Lionel Messi was the star of the show at the 2012 Soccer Masters in Florida last weekend, scoring a hat-trick in an entertaining 7-7 draw.
While European football fans had their eyes on the denouement of Euro 2012 in Poland and Ukraine, the rest of the world was treated to a bevy of the planet’s most talented players outside of Europe.
Although it may not have changed anything, Crisitano Ronaldo’s presence at the UEFA competition meant Messi had the stage to his self and was the undoubted star of the show once more.
The two teams taking part were called the Masters and the Stars, with the Barcelona star lining up for the former with Ezequiel Lavezzi, Didier Drogba, Diego Milito and Camp Nou teammate Javier Mascherano.
Meanwhile, the stars had players such as Edinson Cavani, Radamel Falcao, Diego Forlan, Clarence Seedorf and Liverpool’s Luis Suarez, who also scored a hat-trick.
In the dugouts, former Brazilian coach Dunga was in charge of the Masters, while former England manager Fabio Capello took charge of the Stars.
The game was played at the Sun Life stadium in Miami, home of the Miami Dolphins NFL franchise, and a crowd of 48,327 people turned out for a rare glimpse of their football heroes in the flesh, although they had to do so wet as they were drenched by torrential showers.
Messi opened the scoring with a curled shot from just outside the area in a match that exhibited some exquisite attacking football.
Two penalties in the last two minutes confirmed the match a draw, but the plaudits went with the current Ballon d’Or holder for having a hand in nearly all his side’s goals.
Next year’s match is set to take place in New York City and could feature even more stars, what with there being no major international tournament in 2013.
Watch the highlights above and enjoy the silky skills on show – let us know what you thought of the game by commenting below!