The incredible goal scored by 19-year-old Argentine Lionel Messi
for Barcelona on Wednesday has even the pro-Real Madrid press expressing the highest praise. "I feel like crying. Holy
Christ! Long Live Soccer! Long Live Leo!" exclaimed one reporter.
The Guardian's Sid Lowe, who tracked Spanish reaction to the goal that mirrored Diego Mardona
against England at the 1986 World Cup, reported that the Catalan daily Sport ran a large mug shot of Messi with a caption reading, "If you want to disguise yourself as God, simply cut this
out and put it on."
Like Maradona, Messi started in his own half and beat five men before leaping past a sixth. Marca's headline was, "Messidona." The Goal was Messi's
first of two in a 5-2 win over Getafe in a first-leg Spanish Cup semifinal.
Praise and astonishment were universal, except for Getafe's coach, the German Bernd Schuster
would have preferred that his players cheated to prevent such a wonderful effort: "We should have fouled him, he can't be allowed to reach the area like that."
Messi said he
could "never be compared" to Maradona, but agreed the goal was similar to the Maradona's.
for video of Messi's goal.
for video for Maradona's goal against England in 1986.
for a photo sequence of Messi's