Lionel Messi's Final Goal

Joachim Ladefoged / VII for TIME

Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona, photographed Jan. 11, 2012

Yaaaaaaaargh!" The breathless magic of Lionel Messi's goal scoring often leaves Ray Hudson, the motormouth commentator for Gol TV, grasping for words. It happened again on Jan. 21 as Messi scored a brilliant hat trick in FC Barcelona's 4-1 win at Malaga in Spain's La Liga. His first, a textbook header, had Hudson declaring that "his talent would light up the national grid." After his second, Hudson described the diminutive Argentine as a "colossus bestriding the earth." But Messi's third — a slaloming run from the halfway line past three Malaga defenders, culminating in a soft, left-footed tap past the goalkeeper's...

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