By DAN KARELL
Lionel Messi is on the verge of collecting another individual goal-scoring record.
The star Barcelona forward scored a pair of goals as an under-strength Barca squad took down Ajax, 2-0, in Amsterdam in the fourth UEFA Champions League matchday. Messi’s second goal tied both Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid legend Raul with 71 goals in the Champions League, and Messi will have the first chance to break the record when Barcelona face APOEL on Nov. 25.
Messi scored his first in unconventional fashion in the 36th minute when Marc Bartra beat Ajax goalkeeper Jesper Cillessen to a loose ball in the area and crossed into the middle. The Argentine forward then leaped and directed a header in for the opening goal of the match.
The 27-year-old then tied the record in more standard fashion, dribbling forward before playing a one-two with Pedro on the edge of the box. Pedro returned the pass to the top of the six yard box where Messi slid a shot home.
Here’s a look at some other Champions League scores:
MAN CITY FALL TO CSKA MOSCOW
Manchester City’s exploits in European soccer continue to be underwhelming.
The English side fell, 2-1, to CSKA Moscow at the Etihad Stadium, with Man City finishing the match with nine men on the field. Both Yaya Toure and Fernandinho were sent off.
Seydou Doumbia proved to be the star for CSKA as he put them up 1-0 in the second minute and scored again in the 34th minute to give the lead back to the Russian club. Toure had equalized in the eighth minute with a stellar free kick goal.
With the defeat, Man City sit at the bottom of Group E with just two points from a possible 12.
CHELSEA FAIL TO BEAT MARIBOR ON ROAD
NK Maribor have continued to play well above their weight in the Champions League.
Maribor tied Chelsea, 1-1, in a hard fought game that included plenty of drama. Agim Ibraimi put Maribor up 1-0 in the 50th minute with an impressive curling shot, but Nemanja Matic leveled the scoreline in the 73rd minute as he got on the end of a John Terry header off a corner kick and nestled the ball in for a goal.
Chelsea looked likely to complete the comeback in the 86th minute when Eden Hazard was tripped in the penalty box and a penalty kick was awarded, but the Belgian international’s penalty shot was saved by Jasmin Handanovic.
Here’s a closer look at Wednesday’s Champions League results:
Bayern Munich 2-0 AS Roma
Man City 1-2 CSKA Moscow
Paris Saint-Germain 1-0 APOEL
Ajax 0-2 Barcelona
Maribor 1-1 Chelsea
Sporting CP 4-2 Schalke 04
Athletic Bilbao 0-2 FC Porto
Shakhtar Donetsk 5-0 BATE Borisov
What did you think of today’s UCL performances? Do you expect Messi to break the record on Nov. 25? Surprised that Chelsea was held in Maribor? What is ailing Man City in Europe?
Share your thought’s below.