JOE's Champions League Man of the Week: Lionel Messi
The world's most gifted player is now the all-time joint top-scorer in Champions League history with a record of 71 goals in 90 games. Again that's 71 goals in just 90 games. Phenomenal.
The most memorable sporting teams, moments and players are usually defined by two things; trophies and rivals.
JOE feels incredibly privileged that we're allowed to witness the magnificent career of Lionel Messi unfold before our eyes because seeing the the gifted Argentinian at the peak of his powers is a joy to behold.
It's testament to Messi's genius that we weren't surprised to see him equal another record at the Amsterdam ArenA as Barcelona beat Ajax 2-0.
The previous record for most goals scored in the Champions League was held by Real Madrid's arch finisher Raul but all football fans only had one question on their lips this week as the Champions League unfolded; would it be Cristiano Ronaldo or Messi to match or even break the record?
Much like the entirety of their careers, it seems that Ronaldo and Messi are untouchable when they step onto a football pitch as the duo have almost single-handedly raised the bar for footballers around the world with the sheer amount of goals, skill and jaw-dropping brilliance they have provided.
Ronaldo was subdued against Liverpool but Barcelona's talisman shook off some recent indifferent domestic form with two goals that guaranteed his side a place in the last 16.
Messi's first goal was the rarest of things, a leaping header from the little magician, but it proved to be vital as Barcelona broke the resistance of a stubborn Ajax side.
As for his record-equalling strike, well this goal was tiki-taka at its best as Barca worked the ball from right to left before Messi slotted home Pedro's low cross for his 71st Champions League goal.
Maybe Ronaldo can break Raul's record before him but for now, this week belongs to the one and only Lionel Messi.