Updated: 29 June 2022
The FIFA World Cup 2022 will be the last World Cup that Argentine footballing talisman Lionel Messi plays and thus many are calling it his ‘Last Dance’ or Messi’s last shot at the prestigious World Cup trophy. Argentina has finally been able to put together an incredible team ahead of the Qatar World Cup that is capable enough of bringing home the 2022 FIFA World Cup and thus giving Lionel Messi a fitting farewell.
Keeping aside Lionel Messi’s contribution to the Argentine National team as a team player, in this article, we shall be discussing his individual merits and the numerous records that La Pulga can break during the FIFA World Cup 2022. Here is a list of all those records that Messi can break this year.
FIFA World Cup 2022: Records Lionel Messi can break in the Qatar World Cup
1. Most World Cups Played
The record for the most editions of World Cups played is held by four players – Antonio Carbajal, Lothar Matthaüs, Rafael Márquez, and Gianluigi Buffon. All of them have played in 5 World Cups. This year, two legendary players will be matching that record and they are none other than Lionel Messi and his arch-rival Cristiano Ronaldo. Both of them have played 4 World Cups so far and the 2022 FIFA World Cup will be their 5th.
2. Most Matches played in World Cups
Currently, Diego Maradona holds the record for the most number of World Cup matches played by an Argentine player. He has played 21 World Cup matches. Retired Javier Mascherano is second on the list with 20 appearances while Lionel Messi is third with 19 appearances.
However, Leo should have an even bigger goal in mind. Germany’s Lothar Matthaus currently holds the record for the most appearances ever in the FIFA World Cup with 25 appearances and if Lionel Messi’s Argentina reach the Semi-Final, he will be matching Mathaus’ record and he will break it if they make it to the Final.
3. Most minutes played in World Cups
Italian legend Paulo Maldini currently holds this record with 2,217 minutes played in the World Cups. If Argentina makes it to the Final this year and Lionel Messi plays for 90 minutes in all of their matches, Messi will have played 2,254 minutes in the World Cups and thus he will break Maldini’s record.
4. Most matches as a captain in World Cups
Diego Maradona currently holds this record with 16 Matches played in the World Cup as Argentina’s captain. Lionel Messi has so far played 12 matches in the FIFA World Cup as Argentina’s captain and if La Albiceleste makes it at least to the Semi-final and Messi features in all of their matches, he will break Maradona’s record.
5. Most Golden Balls won in FIFA World Cup History
No player to date has won the FIFA World Cup Golden Ball twice. Lionel Messi did it once in the 2014 World Cup and if he runs it back this year, he will have won the award the most number of times.
6. Most assists in FIFA World Cup history
Diego Maradona currently has the record of most assists in FIFA World Cup to his name with 8 assists. Lionel Messi has had 6 assists in the FIFA World Cups so far and if he provides 3 more assists in the 2022 FIFA World Cup, he will break this record with 9 total assists to his name.