Lionel Messi's highlights from his favourite ever game vs Real Madrid in 2011

Real Madrid v Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Semi Final

Lionel Messi is arguably the greatest sportsperson in history.

And while the debate with Cristiano Ronaldo will always rage on in the footballing sphere, it seems as though Messi has been favoured by the majority of supporters in recent seasons.

The 32-year-old was absolutely phenomenal during the 2018-19 campaign and he looks set to continue where he left off after finally overcoming a series of injuries.

But even the staunchest of Messi fans would admit that, despite a number of world-class displays in the last few years, the Argentine's peak has already passed.

That's by no means a criticism of Messi when you consider he's creeping into his thirties, but those first few seasons in the 2010s were simply otherworldly.

Barcelona and Messi's golden age

In terms of goal-scoring, Messi's zenith came in 2012 when he astonishingly scored 91 goals, but some of his finest form also coincided with Barcelona's peak in the 2010-11 season.

That particular side, managed to Champions League glory by Pep Guardiola, will forever be considered as one of football's greatest and Messi thrived alongside Pedro and David Villa.

It might not have possessed glamorous names such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Thierry Henry or Samuel Eto'o, but it was the finest that Barcelona's 'Tiki Taka' revolution ever functioned.

Barcelona's coach Josep Guardiola (R) ce

Messi's highlights vs Real Madrid in 2011

So, it's fitting then that Messi has named his favourite ever game as a highlight from that very season: the 2-0 win at Real Madrid in the Champions League semi finals.

Barcelona confirmed this on their website earlier this week, documenting how Messi made the selection in an interview with RAC1 and described the game as 'a unique memory.'

We can probably all remember Messi's two goals from that game - who could forget the second? - but it's probably been a long time since you've seen his full highlights. Well, panic not.

You can check Messi tearing about Jose Mourinho's Los Blancos for a full 10 minutes down below:

The favourite game of arguably the greatest ever - and you can see why.

Some of the combination play between Messi, Andres Iniesta and Xavi is absolutely stunning and left the likes of Xabi Alonson and Lassana Diarra cut in half every other minute.

That, and the sheer beauty of when Messi decides he doesn't need any of his teammates and goes on a mazy run that only last-minute tackles, at best, can bring to an end. 

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel M

Of course, Barcelona would go on to place a firm foot in the Champions League final thanks to Messi's near-post finish and unforgettable run from the centre circle.

Messi put on another footballing clinic in the final itself, too, scoring a fine goal against Manchester United alongside goals from his strike partners to bag a third European cup.

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