Sports Desk, Sep 9 (EFE).- With a hat-trick in Argentina’s world cup qualifier win over Bolivia (3-0) on Thursday, Lionel Messi overtook Brazilian legend Pelé’s South American international men’s career goal record of 77.
Argentina’s captain, who was the star of the match at Monumental Stadium in Buenos Aires, achieved the new record of 79 international career goals in 153 games played for the country.
Brazil’s Neymar, who comes closest to the feats of Messi and Pelé, has scored 69 international goals.
Messi has been the all-time top scorer for the team since 2016 when he beat Gabriel Batistuta’s 54 goals. He is also Argentina’s most-capped player.
With the victory, Argentina remains undefeated and in second place in the standings with 18 points, while Bolivia is ninth with six.
On Oct. 7, Argentina will play Paraguay and Bolivia will play Ecuador. EFE