Robert Lewandowski: Is Bayern Munich striker on course to break Lionel Messi’s record?
Robert Lewandowski has experienced a brilliant start to the season, scoring the quadruple in Champions League history and more Bundesliga targets of its clubs than five.
Even the Bayern Munich striker took 31 seconds and 14 minutes to score four goals shooting his tally for the next season to 27 goals in 20 appearances.
The Poland international scored in 13 matches in all competitions for the German champions from August to October, failing to find the net only twice since the German Super Cup final defeat with his club Borussia Dortmund August.
He’s the top scorer in Europe’s leading five leagues, along with his nearest competitor 10 motives behind.
He stated after this week quadruple he’s”hooked on scoring targets” – and the 31-year-old will get his attention on Lionel Messi’s record for most goals in a single season.
It isn’t even December and Lewandowski is well on his way to beating his previous best – that the 43 he managed at 2016-17 for Bayern.
But his form this term means he may have his sights set on Barcelona captain Messi’s record tally of 73, set in 2011-12.
He has more targets than the Ballon d’Or winner did that year – 27 compared Messi’s 25.
The Argentine went on to create 60 looks as Barca won the Copa del Rey and the Club World Cup, despite falling in La Liga and being knocked out of the Champions League by Chelsea at the semi-final.
Bayern nevertheless have 22 league matches to playwith, with possibly six matches remaining in the German Cup and the other eight in the Champions League, should they reach the closing of both competitions.
The tally of Lewandowski would be taken by that into 56 matches.
Thus, to equivalent Messi’s album, he just needs the small matter of 46 objects at a potential 36 games – that’s a rate of 1.28 targets per game. His scoring rate? 1.35.
“He shoots goal more than every other participant in Europe,” European football pro Guillem Balague told Radio 5 Live’s Football Daily Podcast.
“Clearly he’ll score with Bayern, particularly if he is the most important force, along with his goal tally is unbelievable – but it still won’t reach the list of 73 for Messi.”
Here’s how Lewandowski’s listing this year compares with Europe’s other leading scorers:
Defending champions Bayern are third in the Bundesliga after a mixed start.
However, Lewandowski’s performances have been remarkably consistent with German football journalist Raphael Honigstein claims the Pole – whose mindset was contested in previous seasons as reports linked him with a”dream” go to Real Madrid – has now”completely bought into the negative”.
“It’s quite incredible, particularly in the event that you consider that is a Bayern Munich team that hasn’t been playing nicely for most of the year,” Honigstein explained.
“Whoever you speak to at Bayern says this is a new Lewandowski. This is no longer a man that sits looking at his telephone and possibly dreaming of a move to Real Madrid and placing pressure.
“He stays behind to train with a few of the young strikers and assists them with their ending. He assists players around the pitch, his head shakes when a cross does not come his way and he must be one of the very few strikers who have started by being less selfish, scoring goals, and it is a transformation.
“I don’t believe there is an argument against him being the very best number nine in Europe right now. The closest he has as a true rival is Harry Kane.”
Those comments are echoed by Balague, who states the striker’s brand new contract in Bayern has helped him to concentrate on his career in Germany.
“I am convinced it is to do with attention,” Balague added. “For a long time he has pushed to attempt to get into Real Madrid. His agent changed.
“We talked to him last time and he seems still quite engaged in trying to enhance. He is 31 he was 30 final year, and that he was talking about still working hard and things he want to react to improved.
“He reacted badly to mistakes before, however they don’t mean anything to him now, and they’re just obstacles to conquer”