Lionel Messi's two goals in FC Barcelona's Spanish league match led the team to a 2-1 win over Real Betis and shattered Gerd Müller's 40-year-old record for most goals in a calendar year.

The Argentine forward tied the German's mark - 85 - with a tally in the 15th minute and set the new record with another goal just 11 minutes later.

Müller, then 27, scored 72 goals with Bayern Munich and 13 with the German national team in 60 matches over the course of 1972.

The 25-year-old Messi needed 66 matches, including a dozen with the Argentine national squad, to set the new record, and will have three more opportunities before year's end to add to his tally.

Messi's historic performance came just days after he had to be stretchered off the pitch at Camp Nou as a result of a collision with the Benfica goalkeeper in a Champions League match.

Barcelona and Argentina fans held their collective breath until Messi emerged on Thursday to reassure everyone the injury was minor and that he would be fit to play against Betis.

The Argentine phenom is in the running for his fourth consecutive Ballon d'Or as the world's best soccer player. EFE