Lionel Messi scored his 37th hat-trick last night as Barcelona cruised to a 4-0 victory over Manchester City in the Champions League.
It was business as usual for the Argentine, who has now scored 91 goals in the Champions League.
Barcelona were helped by a catalogue of errors from Pep Guardiola’s team, none more important than Claudio Bravo’s ridiculous sending off in the second half. City were still in the contest, trailing by just one goal, when the Chilean’s sweeper-keeper attempts went disastrously.
Up until the sending off in the 53rd minute, Barcelona were certainly in a game. Ilkay Gundogan and John Stones both had opportunities to score in the second half and the rematch in two weeks’ time promises to entertain.
For now, though, City will have to make do with the fact that they were undone by the world’s best footballer.
Messi capitalised on some static defending, and a slip from Fernandinho, to score Barca’s first goal. Eight minutes after Bravo’s sending off he doubled the lead, thumping home from outside the area.
He completed his second hat-trick in this season’s tournament when he slotted home Luis Suarez’s pass.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner would go on to win a penalty and assist Neymar’s goal. It was exemplary stuff.
However, you wouldn’t have known it based on Steve McManaman’s analysis of the game.
The former Real Madrid and Man City player, a co-commentator for BT Sport, downplayed Messi’s performance throughout the 90 minutes.
The forward had a “quiet night”, according to McManaman. It was his reaction to Messi’s third goal, however, that really sparked a reaction on Twitter.
“How has he got three?,” McManaman asked, apparently oblivious to Messi’s heavy influence on the game.
Scroll to 7:10 in the video below to hear McManaman’s reaction.
We can forgive McManaman for being a bit of a homer, considering he played not only for City but also for Barca’s rivals, Madrid.
But that shouldn’t hurt his ability to admire sheer greatness.
Twitter wasn’t entirely impressed with the co-commentator.
What did you make of Leo Messi's performance? Let us know in the comments section below!
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms