Messi finished the triumphant evening only seven goals short of equalling Barcelona's all-time scoring record in official competitions. Note to anyone who has not been paying close attention: Messi is still only 24.
However he was happy to explain to UEFA.com that his eyes are set on short-term gain rather than the history books. "The most important thing tonight is that all these goals we scored take us one step closer to winning the Champions League, which is our objective," Messi said. "We went out there wanting to ensure qualification for the quarter-finals and we achieved that.
"I have always said that it's fantastic when things come off for you like tonight and you play well, but only if you meet your aims for the match. That's what happened against Leverkusen. The team played very, very well, the performance had some beautiful moments and we scored lots of goals."
Playing for Serie A bottom side Benevento just since last January, almost 30-year old Malian international striker Cheick Diabaté, who so far scored 7 goals in 7 Italian league games played, stated: "People who didn't know me are surprised, of course, but I've