La Liga

Guardiola: Messi as dominant as Jordan

Air To The Throne
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Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola likened Lionel Messi to basketball great Michael Jordan on Tuesday night after the Argentinean became the Spanish club's all-time record scorer.

While American Jordan ruled the NBA and set a host of records at the peak of his career with the Chicago Bulls, so Messi, at the age of 24, is achieving unprecedented feats in football.

He set the Barcelona goals record in Tuesday night's 5-3 Primera Division win over with Granada at the Nou Camp.

Messi equaled the mark of 232 official goals set by Cesar Rodriguez during the 1940s and 50s when he slotted home Isaac Cuenca's cross in the 17th minute, and then secured the record outright in the 68th minute when he lobbed the ball over Granada goalkeeper Julio Cesar.

The 24-year-old completed his hat-trick - his eighth of the season for Barcelona - in the 86th minute after rounding Julio Cesar and slamming the ball into the roof of the net.

The three-time FIFA World Player of the Year has scored an incredible 48 goals in 40 games for the Catalan giants this season.

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Guardiola said: "You have few players who dominate like this, but he does it. You can compare him perfectly to Jordan."

Guardiola added: "The day that Leo Messi overcame Cesar, we've had a game from that era.

"Leo has entered history. Those who knew Cesar have told me that he was exceptional.

"I want to thank the team for overcoming all adversity and this guy who is continuing to make history.

"It's all been said before about Messi. He doesn't only score goals, he scores great goals; each one is better than the last. We are seeing the very best in action.

"I'm sorry for those who try to take his throne but this kid is different, better, we are excited to have him."

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