Lionel Messi has developed a passion for playing football from an early age. His grandmother sees the potential in him, she then takes him to his first football training session at Grandoli’s local football club.
With the persuasion of his grandmother, his parents bought him his first pair of football boots and she is the one who asked his first coach, Salvador Aparicio to include him in the match squad.
In his first ever match, he helped the team to win the club’s first ever trophy. He was four when he held his first trophy.
Seeing the potential in him, the coach, Salvador Aparicio vowed to take him to a bigger academy.
He was six years old when he joined the Newell’s Old Boys, a club in Rosario and spent six years there before signing with FC Barcelona and enrolled at the Barcelona’s youth academy.
His first year at Barcelona academy was full of struggle, because of transfer conflicts between Newell’s and Barcelona, he was only permitted to play in friendlies league.
It’s not until a year later in February 2002 he could enroll in the Royal Spanish Football Federation.
Since then, he played constantly until making his professional senior debut when he was 17 during friendly matches against José Mourinho’s Porto. After years of spending time with Barcelona, in 2021 he transfer to Paris Saint Germain.
His notable football career also recognize among national team. He played for Argentina in 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship and scored six goals in the game.
He makes his debut for Argentina’s senior team in 2006 and became the youngest Argentine to play in the FIFA World Cup.
- Real Name: Lionel Andrés Messi Cuccittini
- Stage Name: Lionel Messi
- Also Known As: –
- Nickname: Leo, Messidona
- Birthday: June 24, 1987
- Birthplace: Rosario, Santa Fe, Argentina
- Zodiac Sign: Cancer
- Nationality: Argentine
- Height: 170 cm (5’7”)
- Weight: 67 kg (148 lbs)
- Blood Type: –
- Religion: Roman Catholic
- Profession: Professional Footballer
- Education: –
- Hobbies: Listening to Music, Playing Video Games
- Position: Forward
Barcelona C (2003 – 2004)
Barcelona B (2004 – 2005)
Barcelona (2004 – 2021)
Paris Saint Germain (2021 – )
- Parents: Jorge Horácio Messi (father), Celia Maria Cuccittini (mother)
- Siblings: Rodrigo Messi (older brother), Matías Messi (older brother), Maria Sol Messi (younger sister)
- Wife: Antonella Roccuzzo (2017 – )
- Facebook: @leomessi
- Twitter: –
- Instagram: @leomessi
- Tiktok: @leomessi40118508
- Youtube: –
- His father was a steelworker and also a coach for a local youth football team.
- Lionel Messi was diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency when he was eleven and his parents could not afford the treatment, which cost them $1,000 a month.
- At first, Newell’s promise to help with the treatment, but then they broke the promise. His grandparents then sought help from Barcelona FC to help him with the hormone treatment and sign with him.
- At that time, it was unusual for European clubs to sign foreign players at a young age, so Charly Rexach, whose team director at Barcelona couldn’t immediately sign him.
- Later, he signs his detailed first contract with Barcelona in a paper napkin because Rexach doesn’t have paper with him and rushes to sign with Messi.
- He dated Antonella Roccuzzo since 2009 and they got married in 2017.
- From his marriage to Antonella Roccuzzo, they have three kids Ciro Messi Roccuzzo, Mateo Messi, and Thiago Messi.
- He received a red card 47 seconds after making his international debut in 2005 against Hungary.
- He won FIFA World Player of the Year when he was 22 and kept the award by winning the same category for the next three years.
- He has his own documentary about his life made by filmmaker Alex de la Iglesia, which premiered in August 2014 at Venice Film Festival.
- Forbes magazine ranked him as the world’s second highest paid athlete in 2015.
- He runs faster with a ball than without it. Making him the only player to do so.
- He founded a charitable organization “Leo Messi Foundation” which supports education, health, and sport for children.
- He was named as Best Player of the Year for the sixth times and awarded the “Ballon d’Or Award” and it makes him the player with most number of Ballon d’Or Award.
- In the 2016 Copa America, when he missed a penalty in the final, he announced his retirement from international football. But the decision was reversed when he led Argentina to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
- His transfer from Barcelona to Paris Saint Germain was due to the club’s financial status and debt following years of overspending so they couldn’t afford to give him a new contract.
- His way of scoring goals is similar to Diego Maradona, which led him to get the nickname Messidona.
- He loves food and his favorite dish is escalope Milanese.
- He was investigated for being suspected of tax evasion in 2013.
- His name appears in the 2016 Panama Papers Data Leak in 2016, which he suspected acquire a new company in Panama a day after the Spanish authorities unwrapped his tax offenses.
- He’s been in a long term relationship with Antonella Roccuzzo and they married in 2017. Seems like Antonella Roccuzzo, who shares the same hometown with him is his ideal type.
- His net worth is around $180 million and it makes him the second richest player behind Cristiano Ronaldo.
“It’s scoring goals that’s great, whether against Brazil or anybody else.”
“Sometimes you have to accept you can’t win all the time.”
“I have fun like a child in the street. When the day comes when I’m not enjoying it, I will leave football.”
“There are more important things in life than winning or losing a game.”
“Money is not a motivating factor. Money doesn’t thrill me or make me play better because there are benefits to being wealthy. I’m just happy with a ball at my feet. My motivation comes from playing the game I love. If I wasn’t paid to be a professional footballer I would willingly play for nothing.”
“I always thought I wanted to play professionally, and I always knew that to do that I’d have to make a lot of sacrifices. I made sacrifices by leaving Argentina, leaving my family to start a new life. I changed my friends, my people. Everything. But everything I did, I did for football, to achieve my dream.”
“I’ve always really just liked football, and I’ve always devoted a lot of time to it. When I was a kid, my friends would call me to go out with them, but I would stay home because I had practice the next day. I like going out, but you have to know when you can and when you can’t.”
“I have many years to get better and better, and that has to be my ambition. The day you think there is no improvements to be made is a sad one for any player.”
“It seems like people want to blame me for everything. Whenever any issue arises, I’m said to have been involved even if I’ve had nothing to do with it. That’s why I always focus on what I know, which is playing football, and try to be very careful with what I say because people always try and twist things.”
“For my part, I try to do my bit to make people’s lives more bearable, in particular children across the globe who are having problems.”
“Every year I try to grow as a player and not get stuck in a rut. I try to improve my game in every way possible. But that trait is not something I’ve worked on, it’s part of me.”
“You cannot allow your desire to be a winner to be diminished by achieving success before and I believe there is room for improvement in every sportsman.”
On his way to becoming the great footballer he is, Lionel Messi should face many hardships, even a disease that almost put his football career at risk.
But with his and his family’s determination, he could pass those hardships.