5 heaviest defeats of Lionel Messi's career

Argentina v Brazil - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Qualifier
Argentina v Brazil - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Qualifier

Argentina and Paris Saint-Germain forward Lionel Messi is one of the most decorated players the world has ever seen. He has won six Ballons d’Or, 10 La Liga titles, four Champions Leagues, and a Copa America.

Lionel Messi scored 672 and provided 301 assists for Barcelona before moving to PSG in the summer of 2021. If all goes according to plan, he will be adding many more to his tally as a PSG player.

Lionel Messi’s exploits have led him to more euphoric nights than one can imagine. However, that does not mean the Argentine has not been on the receiving end of some memorable performances.

Today, we will take a look at some of Lionel Messi’s most difficult nights as a football player.

Here are the five heaviest defeats Lionel Messi has endured in his career:

#5 UEFA Champions League 2018-19: Liverpool 4-0 Barcelona

Liverpool v Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Semi Final: Second Leg
Liverpool v Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Semi Final: Second Leg

Barcelona and Liverpool were pitted against one another in the semi-finals of the 2018-19 UEFA Champions League campaign. Playing the first leg at the Camp Nou, Barcelona were at their scintillating best and managed to bag a convincing 3-0 win.

Barcelona skipper Lionel Messi was the star of the show, scoring a stunning brace in the second half.

Having beaten Liverpool comprehensively in the first leg, Barcelona were confident of making their way into the final. Unfortunately, they ended up underestimating the magic of Liverpool’s famed Anfield Stadium.

Lionel Messi stood silently as Liverpool ran circles around his team. The Reds neutralized Lionel Messi beyond recovery and bagged a 4-0 win on the night.

The Reds’ final goal came from a moment of genius by Trent Alexander-Arnold and Divock Origi. Alexander-Arnold’s quick corner to Origi caught the entire Barcelona defense off-guard, allowing the Belgian to read the situation and finish from point-blank range.

#4 World Cup 2010: Argentina 0-4 Germany

Argentina v Germany: 2010 FIFA World Cup - Quarter Finals
Argentina v Germany: 2010 FIFA World Cup - Quarter Finals

Argentina were famously bested by Mario Gotze’s extra-time winner in the final of the 2018 World Cup. But this was not the first time Lionel Messi endured a horrendous night against Germany.

The two heavyweights met in the 2010 World Cup quarter-finals, and there, too, Lionel Messi ended up on the losing side.

With Diego Maradona at the helm and Lionel Messi firing on all cylinders, Argentina started as favorites against Germany.

However, thanks to Thomas Muller’s header, the game turned on its head only three minutes after kickoff. Lionel Messi was closely marked by Bastian Schweinsteiger and failed to impose himself.

Argentina were taken apart by Germany’s incisiveness gameplay in the final stretch of the game. Miroslav Klose scored the decisive brace while Arne Friedrich pitched in with Germany’s fourth and final goal of the night.

Lionel Messi was heavily criticized by his countrymen after the defeat, claiming he was not decisive enough for La Albiceleste at the tournament.

#3 UEFA Champions League 2012-13: Bayern Munich 4-0 Barcelona

Barcelona v FC Bayern Muenchen - UEFA Champions League Semi Final: Second Leg
Barcelona v FC Bayern Muenchen - UEFA Champions League Semi Final: Second Leg

Lionel Messi's worst nightmare, Bayern Munich, were a force to be reckoned with in the 2012-13 UEFA Champions League campaign. Having lost the trophy to Chelsea the previous season, they were desperate to set the record straight. Barcelona, who were in fine form themselves, could do nothing to stop their victory parade.

In the first leg of the Champions League semi-finals, Thomas Muller drew first blood for Bayern Munich in the 25th minute. The hosts added three more through Muller, Mario Gomez and Arjen Robben in the second half to cruise to a 4-0 win.

Lionel Messi, who was rushed back from injury, failed to do anything of note over the course of the match.

The Barcelona number 10 remained an unused substitute in the second leg at the Camp Nou. The game ended 3-0 in favor of the Bavarians.

#2 World Cup 2010 Qualifiers: Bolivia 6-1 Argentina

Spain v Argentina - International friendly
Spain v Argentina - International friendly

World Cup Qualifiers in South America tend to subject players to harsh playing conditions. Playing in Bolivia is arguably the toughest of the lot, and Lionel Messi’s Argentina experienced it first hand in 2009.

Thanks to the high altitude of the Estadio Hernando Siles, Lionel Messi and his teammates failed to get in the game. Bolivian footballers, on the other hand, were having a field day and thrashed La Albiceleste 6-1 in the 2010 World Cup Qualifiers.

Bolian sharpshooter Joaquin Botero scored a well-deserved hat-trick to win the Man of the Match award, while Luis Gonzales scored Argentina’s only goal. 22-year-old Lionel Messi cut a frustrating figure, enduring Argentina’s worst defeat in 60 years.

#1 UEFA Champions League 2019-20: Barcelona 2-8 Bayern Munich

Barcelona v Bayern Munich - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final
Barcelona v Bayern Munich - UEFA Champions League Quarter Final

Bayern Munich and Barcelona have had some rather one-sided tussles in the Champions League, but nothing’s been as painful to watch as the 2019-20 quarter-finals.

Due to the outbreak of COVID-19 the highly-anticipated match was played behind closed doors at Estadio da Luz in Lisbon, Portugal. Fielding their first-choice XI, Barcelona were hopeful of making the night difficult for the German champions. Unfortunately, Bayern Munich had something else in mind.

Thanks to Thomas Muller, Bayern scored the opener after just four minutes of play. A David Alaba own-goal restored parity for Barcelona, but it was not enough for Lionel Messi’s side to get the jump on Bayern. Lionel Messi’s hapless Barcelona conceded three more goals in the second half, leaving them with all to do in the second 45.

Luis Suarez cut the deficit down to two goals, but goals from Robert Lewandowski, Joshua Kimmich and Philippe Coutinho nullified his effort.

Lionel Messi was one of Barcelona’s worst performers on the night and ended up walking away with the heaviest defeat of his career.

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Edited by Samya Majumdar