Flamengo query Messis goal-scoring record

12 December 2012 10:16

Brazilian club Flamengo are contending that their former player Zico held the record for goal scoring in a calendar year, despite Barcelona's Lionel Messi being credited with the accolade last week.

Zico, who starred in the World Cup in 1978, 1982 and 1986 without lifting the trophy, scored 89 goals in the 1979 season, according to Flamengo.

The midfielder scored 81 goals for the Rio-based club, seven with Brazil and one in a friendly, Lance newspaper reported.

Barca's Messi was credited with the new record after going better than German legend Gerd Mueller's previous reported best of 85 goals in 1972, with a first-half brace that sealed his side's 2-1 win over Real Betis on Sunday.

"Messi has not bettered the record," said Bruno Lucena, a club historian.

"If he had played the whole year, Zico would have without doubt scored more than 100 goals," he said in reference to the fact that Zico missed a couple of months of the 1979 season through injury.

Midfielder Zico, who last month stood down as coach of Iraq after previously managing Japan, Fenerbahce and CSKA Moscow, scored 647 goals for clubs and 52 for Brazil in his 1971-1994 career.

Source: AFP

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