Lionel Messi collects record 5th Golden Shoe

BARCELONA – Lionel Messi claimed a record fifth Golden Shoe award on Tuesday for finishing last season as the top scorer in Europe.

Argentina’s soccer star scored 34 goals in 68 games for Barcelona, putting him ahead of Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah and Tottenham’s Harry Kane. Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won the award four times, hit 26 goals in 52 matches for Real Madrid.

After receiving his latest prize in Barcelona, the 31-year-old striker said: “The truth is I had no idea this would happen when I started. I dreamt of playing professional football and enjoying success, I love the game, but I never imagined I would have so much.”

The ceremony was attended by Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu, as well as fellow players like Sergio Busquets and Sergi Roberto.