Champions League: Robert Lewandowski smashes these career records
Veteran Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski smashed a hat-trick in his side's 7-1 mauling of Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League round of 16 second leg. Bayern have progressed to the quarters, winning 8-2 on aggregate. Lewandowski got his hat-trick in 23 minutes from the start of the game. By doing so, he has smashed several records. We decode the same here.
Bayern thrash RB Salzburg 7-1
Bayern hammered RB Lalzburg 7-1 at home in what was a dominating show. Lewandowski gave Bayern an unassailable 3-0 lead, including two penalties before Serge Gnabry added another in the 31st minute. In the second half, Thomas Muller scored a brace as Leroy Sane added the seventh. Salzburg, who showed a lot of promise in the first leg, were nowhere near that level.
Why does this story matter?
Lewandowski's numbers are terrific as he continues to produce the goods each season. The Pole has been chipping in with goals across competitions and has shown no signs of slowing down. The manner in which Lewandowski is going about his business this season, one could see him boss the show ahead of everyone else. His performance against Salzburg was a testament of his prowess.
Earliest treble ever scored from the start of a match
Lewandowski completed his hat-trick within 23 minutes against Salzburg. As per Opta, this is the earliest treble ever scored by a player in UEFA Champions League history from the start of a match. He surpassed Marco Simone for Milan versus Rosenborg in 1996 (24 minutes). Meanwhile, the quickest treble in the competition was registered by Bafetimbi Gomis following his three goals in eight minutes.
Key feats achieved by Lewandowski
Lewandowski has netted 10-plus goals in a single Champions League season for a third time. He has 12 goals this season and had earlier hit 10 in 2012-13 and 15 in the 2019-20 season. Overall, Lewandowski has scored 85 goals in the Champions League. He is only behind Ronaldo and Messi, who have scored 140 and 125 goals respectively.
40-plus goals in seven successive seasons
Lewandowski's hat-trick has seen him race to 12 goals in the 2021-22 edition of the Champions League (highest). The Polish international has 42 goals in the 2021-22 season across competitions. He has surpassed the 40-goal mark for the seventh consecutive season. Prior to this he netted 42, 43, 41, 40, 55, and 48 goals. He has 336 goals in 364 matches for the Bavarians.
Lewandowski joins an elite company
Lewandowski has netted his fifth hat-trick in the competition. He is now the third player to amass five-plus hat-tricks in Champions League after Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, who have eight under their belt.