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Dublin: 2 °C Sunday 20 April, 2014

Like Mike: Messi is football’s equivalent of Jordan, says Guardiola

“There have been very few like them in history, who dominated their sport like that,” Guardiola says as Messi becomes Barca’s record goalscorer.

Image: MANU FERNANDEZ/AP/Press Association Images

BARCELONA COACH PEP GUARDIOLA has hailed Lionel Messi as football’s equivalent of basketball great Michael Jordan.

Guardiola’s comparison came after Argentine forward Messi became the club’s record goalscorer in Tuesday’s 5-3 La Liga win over Granada.

The diminutive forward struck a sensational hat-trick at Camp Nou to move two clear of Cesar Rodriguez’s previous record of 232 goals for the Catalan club.

When asked immediately after the game if Messi, at the age of 24, already deserves to be ranked alongside the likes of basketball legend Jordan, Guardiola replied: “Maybe, yes. There have been very few like them in history, who dominated their sport like that.”

Guardiola is in no doubt that Messi must be considered the finest player in the world today.

Messi is the best and he shows it every three days. I’m sorry for the others, but this boy is something different.

I’m sorry for those who want to compete for Messi’s throne. It’s impossible; this boy is the best.

Messi’s treble against Granada means that he has now netted 54 times in 45 matches in all competitions this season.

WATCH: Leo Messi breaks Barca goalscoring record

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