Lionel Messi is one of the most renowned football players of all time who plays for a Ligue 1 club, Paris Saint-Germain. He also captains the national football team of Argentina. Lionel Messi has achieved several feats throughout his career and continues to accomplish more. Fans even considered Lionel Messi as the most skilled and one of the greatest footballers of all time. Despite being this popular, there are several facts that the fans don’t know about Messi. If you’re also one of them, just don’t worry because this article will cover the Top 7 Lesser Known Facts About Lionel Messi.
1: Lionel Messi Unremarkable Record & Achievements
Leo Messi is one of the greatest football players, and his records and accomplishments also indicated the same. So far, Lionel Messi has won a total of six Ballon d’Or awards, six European Golden shoes, and in 2020 he was also included in the Ballon d’Or dream team. Before leaving Barcelona in 2021, Messi had won a total of 35 record trophies for that club that includes seven Copa del Ray titles, ten La Liga titles, and four UEFA Championship Leagues.
Lionel Messi also holds the record for the most number of goals in La Liga and is also the proud record holder of the most international goals by a South American male. Messi also has the most goals by any player for a single club. Not only that, but Messi also won an Olympic Gold Medal at the 2008 Olympics. These are some unremarkable achievements that make Messi one of the greatest football players of all time.
2: Messi’s Senior Debut Lasted Less Than 50 Seconds
Lionel Messi is currently one of the highest goal scorers for Argentina. But his senior debut for the nation didn’t go as he planned. He made his debut back on August 17, 2005, in a friendly game against Hungary. Messi appeared on the field during the 65th minute of the game after replacing Lisandro Lopez. However, in less than 50 seconds, Messi was shown a red card by the referee for a flailing elbow towards Vilmoz Vanczak. The 18-year-old Messi didn’t even last a single minute in his senior debut game for Argentina.
3: Messi Had Growth Hormone Deficiency
Lionel Messi had to deal with a very rough childhood as he suffered from growth hormone deficiency. The doctors even declared that he wouldn’t be able to pursue his goal as a footballer anymore. Messi’s family wasn’t really rich at that time. The treatment for this disease costs around $1000 a month that they couldn’t afford. However, FC Barcelona came forward to pay for his expense and relocated Leo’s family to Spain, and even paid for all his expenses. They were pretty impressed by Messi’s skill and wanted him to pursue his career as a footballer.
4: Messi’s First Contract Was On Paper Napkin
One of the most lesser-known facts about Messi is that he signed his very first contract on the piece of napkin. FC Barcelona’s coach Carles Rexach was quite impressed by Messi’s talent. As a result, he offered him a contract that promises to cover all of Messi’s expenses if he moves to Spain. However, at that time, Rexach didn’t have any formal papers with him. As a result, he made a contract on the piece of napkin in order to make sure that Messi traveled with him to Spain.
5: Lionel Messi’s First Club
Many fans are still in the dark about Lionel Messi’s first major club. Almost everyone is aware of the fact that Messi was playing for Newell’s Old Boys when he caught the eyes of FC Barcelona’s coach. Many fans think that Newell’s Old Boys is the inaugural club of Messi. However, that’s not the case because Messi made his debut for a lesser-known club known as Grandoli. The interesting thing is that Grandoli’s coach was none other than Messi’s own father.
6: Lionel Messi Has Dual Nationality With Italian Heritage
Lionel Messi was a born Argentine, but he has a nationality of Spain as well. He relocated to Spain when he was only 13-years-old that allows him to play for the national football team of Spain as well. He even got the offer from them. But he decided to play for the national side of Argentina in the end. The most interesting fact about Lionel Messi is that his family heritage actually belongs to Italy. The paternal ancestors of Messi were from Recanati, a town in the Province of Macerata, Italy.
7: Lionel Messi’s Unique Celebration
Lionel Messi’s unique celebratory pose after scoring a goal is actually a tribute to his grandmother. Messi was heavily attached to his grandmother, who used to be with him during his earlier days of training. However, she didn’t live long enough to see Messi becoming one of the best football players of all time. So, whenever Messi scores a goal, he raises both his hands in the air in order to express his gratitude and pay tribute to his grandmother.
So, these are the Top 7 Lesser Known Facts About Lionel Messi that helps the fans know him even better. Stay tuned with Sports News International for more interesting sports updates.