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Messi sweeps up goalscoring honours

Lionel Messi has ended a memorable campaign with yet another personal accolade after his goal in FC Barcelona's final victory, his ninth of this UEFA Champions League season, ensured he was the competition's top scorer.

Lionel Messi struck his ninth goal of this campaign in Rome
Lionel Messi struck his ninth goal of this campaign in Rome ©Getty Images

Lionel Messi's goal in FC Barcelona's 2-0 final victory against Manchester United FC capped a memorable season for the forward and ensured he ended it with yet another personal accolade having finished as top scorer in the UEFA Champions League.

Nine goals
The Argentinian international managed nine goals in eleven games to take the crown from Cristiano Ronaldo, who last term had edged Messi into joint-second place alongside Didier Drogba, Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres. This time, the 21-year-old has prevailed ahead of Liverpool FC's Gerrard and Miroslav Klose of FC Bayern München, both on seven goals, one more than FC Porto's Lisandro. Six players netted five goals, including Messi's club-mate Thierry Henry.

All-time high
Messi was, however, unable to match the European Champion Clubs' Cup record haul of 14 goals in a season, shared by José Altafini (AC Milan, 1962/63) and Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United, 2002/03). He nonetheless becomes the first Argentinian to top-score in Europe's élite competition since ten-goal Alfredo di Stéfano (Real Madrid CF, 1957/58). Current Madrid striker Raúl González remains the European Cup's all-time leading marksman with 64 goals, four clear of team-mate Van Nistelrooy, with Andriy Shevchenko on 56.

2008/09 UEFA Champions League top scorers
Lionel MessiFC Barcelona9
Steven GerrardLiverpool FC7
Miroslav KloseFC Bayern München7
LisandroFC Porto6
Emmanuel AdebayorArsenal FC5
Thierry HenryFC Barcelona5
Alessandro Del PieroJuventus5
Didier DrogbaChelsea FC5
Robin van PersieArsenal FC5
Karim BenzemaOlympique Lyonnais5

UEFA Champions League top scorers season by season
2007/08Cristiano RonaldoManchester United FC8
2006/07KakáAC Milan10
2005/06Andriy ShevchenkoAC Milan9
2004/05AdrianoFC Internazionale Milano10
2003/04Fernando MorientesAS Monaco FC9
2002/03Ruud van NistelrooyManchester United FC14
2001/02Ruud van NistelrooyManchester United FC10
2000/01Andriy Shevchenko
Mário Jardel
AC Milan
Galatasaray AŞ
Mário Jardel
Serhiy Rebrov
Raúl González
FC Barcelona
FC Porto
FC Dynamo Kyiv
Real Madrid CF
1998/99Andriy ShevchenkoFC Dynamo Kyiv10
1997/98Alessandro Del PieroJuventus10
1996/97Ally McCoistRangers FC6
1995/96Jari LitmanenAFC Ajax9
1994/95George WeahParis Saint-German FC8
1993/94Ronaldo Koeman
Wynton Rufer
FC Barcelona
Werder Bremen
1992/93RomárioFC Barcelona7