Lionel Messi moved into a tie for second place on Barcelona's career scoring list, getting a goal in each half Wednesday night to lead the defending champions to a 5-0 victory at BATE Borisov of Belarus in the European Champions League.
Messi scored in the 38th and 55th minutes to give him 14 goals in 10 games this season and 194 in his career, matching Laszlo Kubala. Just 24, Messi is closing in on Cesar Rodriguez's team record of 235 goals from 1942-55.
"I am very happy to have equaled a man who was so important in the history of this club," Messi said. "I knew that I could match Kubala, but I didn't go out tonight thinking about scoring goals, nothing of the sort, just playing like always."
At Minsk, Aleksandr Volodko's own goal put Barcelona ahead in the 19th minute, and Pedro Rodriguez doubled the lead three minutes later. David Villa added a goal in the 90th.
Barcelona (1-0-1) leads Group H on goal difference over AC Milan (1-0-1), which beat visiting Viktoria Plzen of the Czech Republic 2-0 as Zlatan Ibrahimovic converted a penalty kick in the 53rd minute and fed Antonio Cassano for a goal in the 66th.
England's dominance of the Champions League appears to be on the wane, with Arsenal the only team to emerge victorious this week after beating Olympiakos 2-1 in Group F.
In London, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain scored for the Gunners (1-0-1) in the eighth minute of his Champions League debut and Andre Santos made it 2-0 in the 20th. David Fuster, unmarked on a corner kick, scored for Olympiakos in the 27th minute of the Group F match.
Chelsea (1-0-1) was held to a 1-1 draw at Valencia in Group E, a day after Manchester City lost at Bayern Munich and Manchester United was held to a tie by visiting Basel. Roberto Soldado's 87th-minute penalty kick after a hand ball by Salomon Kalou tied the score in Spain after Frank Lampard had put the Blues ahead in the 56th.
"The important thing for a striker is to control the ball and in that sense I wasn't on form tonight," Soldado said. "With the chances we had we could have taken a more positive result from this game. We want to be in the next phase of this tournament and for that reason we realize our home games will be decisive."
In other games, Bayer Leverkusen beat Genk 2-0 in Group E; Marseille defeated Borussia Dortmund 3-0 in Group F; Zenit St. Petersburg beat Porto 3-1 and Shakhtar Donetsk tied Cyprus' APOEL 1-1 in Group G.
- Lionel Messi
- Laszlo Kubala
- BATE Borisov of Belarus