Manchester United – May 2009
The various ways in which Lionel Messi can score on the pitch appears limitless at times, and he can find himself in dangerous positions almost anywhere on the pitch. In the first of two UEFA Champions League finals in a span of three seasons, Manchester United were undone by the Argentine forward in a unique way.
Messi is not the tallest of attackers, but his header to seal victory in Rome was an excellent piece of athletic skill.
Up 1-0 late in the second half, Messi finds space in the penalty area and loops a fantastic header into the back of the net. Barcelona would win the match 2-0.
Opposing sides know what Messi can bring to an encounter in terms of his pace and ability to get by defenders all on his own. He is the one of the best players of this or any generation, and certainly becomes a key priority for every defence he faces.
But Lionel Messi can produce results in almost any way, as Cristiano Ronaldo and Manchester United learned that evening at the Stadio Olimpico.