Thomas Mueller claimed a Champions League record Friday night after stealing the limelight from Robert Lewandowski and Lionel Messi as Bayern Munich routed Barcelona in their Champions League quarter-final
Mueller netted twice in Lisbon as Barcelona conceded four goals in the first-half of a Champions League game for the first time as Bayern went 4-1 up at half-time.
Substitute Philippe Coutinho also scored twice in Bayern’s 8-2 hammering.
23 – Thomas Müller has now scored 23 goals in the Champions League knockout stages, the third-most of any player behind Cristiano Ronaldo (67) and Lionel Messi (47). Stage. #UCL pic.twitter.com/3p2GYY7tKe
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 14, 2020
Thomas Müller wins the Man of the Match Award, but admits that “12 or 15 players” at Bayern deserved it too. 👏🏻 pic.twitter.com/e3ZsAKM1AV
— Bavarian Tweets (@BavarianTweets) August 14, 2020
The 30-year-old Mueller capped an outstanding display by passing Philipp Lahm’s record to become the German with the most Champions League appearances on 113 games alongside the MVP of the match.
In the build up, there had been fierce debate as to whether Lewandowski or Messi is the better player.
Only three players have provided 20+ assists in Europe’s top five leagues + UCL + UEL so far this season:
⬢ 24 – Lionel Messi
⬡ 22 – Thomas Müller
⬡ 22 – Kevin De Bruyne
Only one of them has also scored 20+ goals. 🤪 pic.twitter.com/O9zry0Nj8V
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) August 14, 2020
However, it was Mueller who stole the show, underlining his status as Barcelona’s nemesis with six goals in five games against the Spanish giants.
Mueller scored against Barcelona when Bayern bowed out in the Champions League semi-finals in 2014/15.
Thomas Müller has 14 goals and 26 assists in just 37 appearances via minutes (3,313).
He is one of the most spacially aware and intelligent players I have ever seen. pic.twitter.com/IeSQ87C9vn
— UtdArena (@utdarena) August 14, 2020
He also netted three goals over two legs against Barcelona seven years ago when Bayern romped to a 4-0 win in Munich and 3-0 away in the semi-finals on the way to winning the 2013 Champions League title.
After creating a record 21 assists in the Bundesliga last season – many of them finished by Lewandowski – Mueller outshone the Champions League’s top-scorer this season in Lisbon with two superb first-half goals.