BARCELONA: Lionel Messi insisted he was getting better with age after receiving the European Golden Shoe award for the fourth time on Friday.
The 30-year-old Argentine won the prize for being the top scorer in Europe´s leading leagues last season after netting 37 times for Barcelona.
“I have always said that I don´t consider myself to be a striker, but I have been lucky enough to always score goals and win individual prizes,” the five-time Ballon d´Or winner said after being handed the trophy at a ceremony in Barcelona.
“As I have progressed off the field, I think I have also done so on the pitch.
“I have improved and added things to my game and I enjoy myself more and more every day as a player.”
Messi won the trophy ahead of Bas Dost, who scored 34 goals for Sporting Lisbon last season, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, on target 31 times for Borussia Dortmund.
Previously the winner in 2010, 2012 and 2013, Messi equals Cristiano Ronaldo in claiming a fourth Golden Shoe. The Real Madrid superstar was the winner in 2008, 2011, 2014 and 2015.
Messi succeeds his Barcelona team-mate Luis Suarez, the 2016 winner who handed over the trophy on Friday.
Messi is on top of the scorers´ charts in La Liga again this season, with 12 goals in 12 games.