Lionel Messi injury: Barcelona forward to fall 46 goals short of last year's record breaking season
The Argentina international is not expected to play again this year
Lionel Messi will fall 46 goals short of his incredible haul of 91 for club and country last year following news of a hamstring tear that will keep him out until the new year.
It was revealed today that the Barcelona forward, who was forced off in the 4-1 victory over Real Betis on Sunday, will not play again until 2014 after being sidelined for between six and eight weeks.
It means he will not be able to add to his tally of 45 goals he has scored this calender year. While still a hugely impressive total - which is only bettered by Cristiano Ronaldo, who has 62 goals - it will fall well short of the 91 he scored in 2012.
That tally from last year set all sorts of records including surpassing the record of 85 goals set in 1972 by Germany and Bayern Munich’s Gerd Muller.
Finishing the year with 45 goals will also be lower than the figures the Argentina international recorded in 2011 and 2010.
While seeing his year curtailed early, his closest challengers from across Europe's top leagues will still have to go some to beat him to second place. Robert Lewandowski and Zlatan Ibrahimovic are tied on 35 goals, while Robin van Persie of Manchester United has 33.
Latest in Sport
Kevin Garside: Manchester United may have history and tradition but, as David Moyes never realised, a big-time manager always bends such things to his will
Louis van Gaal denies problem with Wilfried Zaha despite Manchester United forward being given no game time
Calum Chambers: Who is Arsenal's £16m right-back target?
Manchester United latest: Angel Di Maria move no closer as Juan Mata emerges as Louis van Gaal's favoured No 10 as prospect of signing
Arsenal transfer news: Versatile Calum Chambers is a 'gamble', admits Arsene Wenger as Arsenal spending passes £50m
- 1 Secret Cinema: Why were Back to the Future screenings cancelled?
- 2 Christians: The world's most persecuted people
- 3 The secret report that helps Israelis to hide facts
- 4 Ross Burden dead: MasterChef and Ready Steady Cook star, dies aged 45
- 5 Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
The secret report that helps Israelis to hide facts
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Were 'Poor Doors' added to mixed developments so wealthy residents don't have to go in alongside social housing tenants?
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Opponents of Israel's military operation in Gaza are the real enemies of Middle Eastern peace
A new Russian revolution: The cracks are starting to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc