This Argentinian hero has already proved himself in the football world with his skills, his passion for the game and his unremitting professionalism. Messi has won multiple awards throughout his career. He’s also one of the top 20 richest athletes in the world. Messi has overcome hardships in his career such as being diagnosed with growth hormone disorder at age 10. The only team willing to pay for his medical treatment at this time was Barcelona, which was why he decided to play for them.
Messi was not born in a well-to-do family. His father was a worker in a steel factory and his mother worked part time as a cleaner. From a very early age, Messi had been fascinated by the sport and joined his first club at the age of five. In an unfortunate turn of events, when he was eleven, Messi was diagnosed of having a deficiency of growth hormones and his treatment to overcome the situation would require about $900 a month. While many local clubs and teams had shown a lot of interest in Messi, nobody was willing to shell out the expenses for his treatment.
However, this young boy had already managed to raise a number of eyebrows with his impeccable skills and his immense talent with the ball. His strength and determination shone through on the field and he was noticed by the sporting director of Barcelona FC, who offered him a contract to join the club. He also assured him that if he moves to Spain in order to pursue a football career, the club would pay for all his medical expenses. Messi accepted the contract and shifted to Spain. Ever since that happened, Messi has never looked back and he went on to make a big name for himself internationally, and has garnered a lot of love from football fans all over the world.
Messi is appreciated and adored by many, yet there are some unknown and incredible facts about this extraordinary sportsman that makes his story even more inspiring.
1. The Worthy Napkin
Although he has been one of the most celebrated and successful players for Barcelona with the maximum number of goals for the club side in his whole career.
“Barcelona gave me everything, they took a chance on me when nobody else would. I never have any desire to play for anybody else, I will be here for as long as they want me.”
He had been playing for the same club side since his starting days but do you know.
Messi’s initial contract was signed on a paper napkin.
You heard it right, a paper napkin!
The sporting director of the Barcelona club side, Carles Rexach, was so impressed with his skills at that time that he didn’t want to miss on a talent like him even for a few hours. At that point of time, they were only able to find a napkin, so Carles detailed his contract on that napkin.
2. Gift From Another Great
The number 10 jersey of Messi is almost as famous as his name itself, but do you guys know that the Barcelona jersey number 10 originally belonged to another great sportsman Ronaldinho. Isn’t it incredible that, it was another great sportsman from whom Lionel Messi inherited that number. In a way, it was just another great in the making.
“This is much more than I dreamed about as a boy. I want to thank football in general for what it has given me.”
But we can’t ignore the passion and dedication he has for his game. It’s his skills and never ending greed for success that has given him the much-deserved success.
3. The Offer From Spain
Barcelona proved to be a very lucky signing for the young Messi as he got the offer to represent the Spanish National team but he chose to refuse the offer as he wanted to play only for Argentina.
Leo was also honoured with the citizenship of Spain.
“I’m lucky to be part of a team who help to make me look good, and they deserve as much of the credit for my success as I do for the hard work we have all put in on the training ground.”
Other than the offer to represent the national team Lionel Messi was also given the Spanish citizenship in the year 2005. Till date, he holds two passports for Spain and Argentina respectively.
4. Debut Cut Short
Representing one’s own national color for the first time is any sportsman’s dream but for Messi, his debut turned out to be a nightmare as his debut was cut short to 47 seconds on the field.
You heard it right 47 seconds!
“Something deep in my character allows me to take the hits and get on with trying to win.”
Messi made his Debut as a substitute against Hungary but was out of the game in just 47 seconds after getting a red card.
5. The Golden Left
Getting a golden boot in International football is considered as one of the greatest achievements. Although Messi has achieved this feat number of times but the best came in the year 2011 when he won a golden boot created from the cast of his own left foot.
The golden left.
“Being a bit famous now gives me the opportunity to help people who really need it, especially children.”
The boot was created to raise funds for Tohoku earthquake victims.
Lionel Messi has been an exemplar inspiration for those who dream to represent their nation in sports and bring laurels to their nation.
Even after becoming one of the biggest stars in the sport, Messi has not forgotten the difficult times he has faced in his past. Consequently, in 2007, he established the Leo Messi Foundation which is dedicated to provide healthcare and education to poor and vulnerable children. Messi is definitely a motivational figure who has made it big on the basis of his determination and skill and has combated a difficult past to come out on top.
MagTapp salutes the spirit of Messi and urges you all to tread on the path of empowerment along with them.
“Because You Are A Genius”