Lionel Messi lifted the European Golden Boot yet again for a record sixth time in his career at the end of last season. Age seems to have no effect on him. Despite being 33, he continues to score goals and provide assists, and leads on both fronts in Europe. The following are some interesting facts about Messi that prove that he is definitely one of the best in the world!
Top 18 Interesting facts about Lionel Messi:
1. Full Name:
His full name is Luis Lionel Andres Messi. He was born on June 24, 1987 in Rosario, Argentina. Messi’s father, Jorge, was a steelworker who also coached the local youth football team.
2. The Machine of ’87:
Messi joined the Rosario club when he was six years old. During the six years he played for Newell’s, he scored almost 500 goals as a member of “The Machine of ’87”, the near-unbeatable youth side named for the year of their birth, and regularly entertained crowds by performing ball tricks during half-time of the first team’s home games.
3. No money for treatment:
Lionel Messi was diagnosed with a growth hormone deficiency at the age of 10. As his father’s health insurance covered only two years of growth hormone treatment, which cost at least $1,000 per month, Newell’s agreed to contribute, but later reneged on their promise. He was scouted by Buenos Aires club River Plate, whose playmaker, Pablo Aimar, he idolised, but they were also unable to pay for his treatment due to Argentina’s economic collapse.
4. First contract with Barcelona Club got rejected:
As the Messi family had relatives in Catalonia, they sought to arrange a trial with Barcelona in September 2000. First team director Charly Rexach immediately wanted to sign him, but the board of directors hesitated; at the time it was highly unusual for European clubs to sign foreign players of such a young age.
5. Baby Dream Team:
Messi’s growth hormone treatment completed at the age of 14 and he became an integral part of the “Baby Dream Team”, Barcelona’s greatest-ever youth side.
6. Entry to Barcelona:
Messi made his debut for Barcelona against RCD Espanyol at age 18. He became the third-youngest player to start for Barcelona and the youngest ever to score for the club.
7. The “little brother” of Ronaldinho:
After his first training session, Ronaldinho recognized the greatness of Messi a 16 year old then and told his teammates that he’ll be even better than himself. He soon befriended Messi and called him his “little brother.”
Enjoy the sample of Ronaldinho and Messi magic:
8. A nickname “Messiah”:
After Ronaldinho lost form, Messi became Barça’s new star player at only 20 years old, receiving the nickname “Messiah” from the Spanish media. His efforts in 2007 also earned him award recognition; journalists voted him the third-best player of the year for the 2007 Ballon d’Or, behind Kaká and runner-up Cristiano Ronaldo, while international managers and national team captains voted him second for the FIFA World Player of the Year award, again behind Kaká.
9. Compared with Diego Maradona:
Already frequently compared to compatriot Diego Maradona, Messi proved their similarity when he nearly replicated Maradona’s two most famous goals in the span of three weeks. During a Copa del Rey semi-final against Getafe on 18 April, he scored a goal remarkably similar to Maradona’s goal in the quarter-finals of the 1986 FIFA World Cup, known as the Goal of the Century.
10. Champions League top scorer in 2009:
As the season’s Champions League top scorer with nine goals, the youngest in the tournament’s history, Messi scored two goals and assisted two more to ensure a 4–0 quarter-final victory over Bayern Munich. He returned as a false nine during the final on 27 May in Rome against Manchester United. Barcelona were crowned champions of Europe by winning the match 2–0, the second goal coming from a Messi header over goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar. Barcelona thus achieved the first treble in the history of Spanish football.
11.The captain of Argentina National Team:
As the squad’s captain from August 2011, he led Argentina to three consecutive finals: the 2014 FIFA World Cup, for which he won the Golden Ball, and the 2015 and 2016 Copas América. After announcing his international retirement in 2016, he reversed his decision and led his country to qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and a third-place finish at the 2019 Copa América.
Watch One of the golden shoe awards for the legend:
12. Guinness World Records:
At the close of the year 2012, Messi had scored a record 91 goals in all competitions for Barcelona and Argentina. Although FIFA did not acknowledge the achievement, citing verifiability issues, he received the Guinness World Records title for most goals scored in a calendar year. As the odds-on favourite, Messi again won the FIFA Ballon d’Or, becoming the only player in history to win the Ballon d’Or four times.
13. Reversed his decision of Retirement:
In the Copa America final against Chile, Messi missed his penalty in the shootout after which Chile won the final. Messi announced retirement from the National team after the final.
A few days after his retirement, Messi reversed his decision after a huge campaign from the Argentina supporters for him to return to the National Team.
14. Lionel Messi’s wife and kids:
Messi has been in a relationship with Antonella Roccuzzo since 2008 when he was 20 years old. Roccuzzo is the cousin of Messi’s childhood friend, and they’ve known each other since age 5. Messi and Roccuzzo are now married and have three sons together.
15. Lionel Messi Net Worth in 2020:
Lionel Messi’s Net Worth in 2020 is valued at $400 million, which ranks him as one of the richest football players in the world right now. Aside from football which is responsible for a huge share of his wealth, Messi’s various endorsement deals with top brands such as his life long endorsement deal with sports kit manufacturer, Adidas has contributed greatly to his $400 million fortune. In 2019, according to US magazine, Forbes, Messi made $127 million which ranks him as the highest-paid athlete in the globe
16. Lionel Messi Salary in 2020:
Lionel Messi earns roughly $92 million-plus as base salary per year. For a skilled player such as Lionel Messi, his salary is outrageously mouthwatering. In 2019 alone, before tax deductions, Messi received as much as $92 million as his annual basic salary. Along with endorsement deals, Messi made about $127 million, making him the highest-paid athlete and the 4th highest-paid celebrity in 2019.
17. Lionel Messi Private Jet:
For a man like Lionel Messi with a net worth valued at a whopping $400 million, owning a private jet is nothing out of the ordinary. Lionel Messi owns a $25 million 2004 Gulfstream V private jet. Interestingly, the soccer star has the names of his wife and children printed on the footsteps of the aircraft.
18. Lionel Messi Top 10 Goals:
We know, a real Messi fan would be waiting to see this! Here is the top 10 goals recorded in the name of Messi!