5 times the game was changed by a swing of Messi's left foot
What do you say about the little genius? I mean. What do you say?
The best of his generation; the greatest of his time? The Greatest of All-Time?
It's never easy to describe with words - we often use to describe things or worse, other people - the talent of the Argentine. This supernatural anomaly, this rebuke to realism, points to something indescribable; something divine.
But here we are, taking another go at trying to put-into-words (what is unfathomable to the human mind) the utter brilliance of Lionel Messi.
if and when I fail to do justice to the crowned king of 'from another world' football.
#5 Leo Messi vs Ecuador to send Argentina into the World Cup Finals in Russia 2018
"..looking for the hat-trick..! He is incredible! Messi saves Argentina!"
Argentina were on the precipice of failing to qualify to the World Cup Finals in Russia this year. They had an abysmal campaign in the South American Qualifying stage for the biggest sporting event in the world. After beating Chile, the national side lost to Bolivia and failed to put away Uruguay, Venezuela and Peru; putting themselves in a must-win clash against Ecuador.
They couldn't have gotten off to a worse start conceding inside the opening 38 seconds of the game. The incapability to find the back of the net now only weighed more heavily on the minds of the attacking line.
All of Argentina hoped their all-conquering talisman would drag them out of the mess they found themselves in, and boy did they get their wish.
The all-time leading goalscorer for Barcelona started getting on the ball right away and looked to force things. He played in Angel Di Maria on a couple of occasions but the PSG man failed to finish.
Not willing to lean on the rest of his team, Messi took matters (of finishing) into his own hands. In the 12th minute he linked up with the former Madrid man and slotted the ball home with a first time finish with the outside of his left boot, through the keeper's legs.
And right in that moment, the game had swung the way of Argentina.
The mesmerising display from the 5 time Ballon d'Or winner was far from over, putting his native country in the lead after winning the ball on the edge of the opposition box and despite being put under pressure by two defenders, blasted the ball in at the near post, into the roof of the net.
That lethal left foot of his was at it again, rounding off his hat-trick for the night, but most importantly booking a berth for his country in Russia in 2018.
Not good for his national side this kid, is he?