Beaten Gerd Mueller hails 'giant' Lionel Messi

Messi, still just 25, on Sunday equalled then surpassed Mueller's record with two first-half goals that secured a 2-1 win for his side Barcelona against Seville club Real Betis, earning him plaudits around the world. "I hope he'll score one or two goals again in the matches that remain in 2012 and that his record will stand for the next 40 years," added Mueller, who was nicknamed "Der Bomber" (The Bomber).

updated: December 10, 2012 21:21 IST
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Berlin: Germany great Gerd Mueller on Monday described Lionel Messi as a "giant" after the Argentine broke his calendar year goalscoring record that had stood for 40 years.

"My record of 85 goals in 60 matches, which stood since 1972, was beaten by the best player in the world, Lionel Messi, and I'm very happy for him," Mueller said, according to a spokesman for his former club, Bayern Munich.

The former Germany striker added that he thought Messi was "an incredible player, a giant who is at the same time very nice and a polished professional".

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