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His Name Is Messi

"Messi was magnificent," Barcelona Coach Pep Guardiola says of Lionel Messi.

In a 3-1 Copa del Rey victory over Atletico Madrid, the Argentine wizard completed a hat trick with an instinctive move past the goalkeeper. But what you really want to see is the breathtaking footwork and acceleration in the sequence just before the final goal:

By Steve Goff  |  January 7, 2009; 9:55 AM ET
Categories:  Spain  
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Pretty, but he looked offside

Posted by: dcufan | January 7, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

dcufan: shh, it was also abysmal goalkeeping. but on further review, it was very close, but I think he was onsides, and no one in Spain will call that close one on Messi after being robbed by the woodwork on the previous one.

Posted by: joshuaostevens | January 7, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

Skill kills. As does speed. Together, they're Messi.

Posted by: joedoc1 | January 7, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

God golly, that guy is good. I think he was onside, but only just - pause it at 1:02; Messi timed his run absolutely perfectly.

Posted by: TheAMT | January 7, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

"I got that move." Ben Olsen

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 7, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Agree w/dcufan - he looked to be offside on goal no. 3, clearly. Fantastic move to beat the goalie, though.

Posted by: BaltoFan | January 7, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Moves and speed like that should improve his MLS draft position considerably...

Posted by: JkR- | January 7, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Nice one JkR.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 7, 2009 11:15 AM | Report abuse

He's ridiculous.

What network was this pirated off of? The accent sounds Scotch-Romanian.

Posted by: IamAM | January 7, 2009 11:18 AM | Report abuse

he was on by two steps. Atletico's right back kept him onside.

Right now, there isn't a better player in the world (and I don't think there's a better team either).

Posted by: MalagaCFfan | January 7, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Here is a version of the highlights available in High Quality:

Dirty pass on the first goal. Absolutely ridiculous run before the third goal. Pretty poor marking on the third goal. How do you lose track of Messi in the box?

Posted by: KeeperPat | January 7, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

I understand that he is unhappy at Barca and plans to sign with DCU as our next DP after La Liga completes the current season. He will look good in a black shirt.

Posted by: agoldhammer | January 7, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

I don't know how anyone can call (Cristiano) Ronaldo a better player than Messi. He is incredible...and not a flopper!

Posted by: wmsiii | January 7, 2009 12:18 PM | Report abuse

His acceleration is astounding. The speed of that first move around the goalie, coming from a dead stop...Wow! I suspect he will replace Ronaldo as Player of the Year.

Posted by: fischy | January 7, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Ronaldo:George Best::Messi:Pele

I do love George Best, but I'd rather have had Pele on my team. Same goes with Ronaldo and Messi.

Posted by: Mastodon_Juan | January 7, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Then wouldn't you want to say George Best:Pele::Ronaldo:Messi - ?

Posted by: fallschurch1 | January 7, 2009 4:23 PM | Report abuse

He's out of this world! Must be the shoes...

Posted by: DadRyan | January 7, 2009 11:04 PM | Report abuse

Best player in the world. Period.

Posted by: wapo9 | January 9, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

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