Soccer Player · FC Barcelona
Full name Lionel Andrés Messi Cuccittini
Nickname Messi, Leo, La Pulga,
Position Right Winger / Striker / False 9’s / Offensive middle
Club FC Barcelona
Born June 24, 19871985 (Age 29)
Height 1.70 m
Salary from the club 291,000 € per week (after tax)
Value 120 million. € – Jan. 2017
Official matches played in total (Teams): 112
Official goal scored in total (Teams): 59
Official matches played in total (Club): 574
Official goal scored in total (Club): 497
“I always want to play, even if I had to do it for free” – Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi is considered by many as one of the best footballers ever, and has since 2008 been in constant battle with Cristiano Ronaldo for the title of world’s best footballer. This is due to his high scoring average and dribbling style, compared to Diego Maradona.
Lionel Messi was born June 24, 1987 in Rosario, Argentina. His father, Jorge Messi worked as a factory worker, and his mother Celia Mará Cuccittini was chairwoman. He is the youngest of his siblings (two brothers, one sister), and just his siblings and family have a large share in that Messi all came to play football.
Messi’s talent was expressed for the very first time when his brothers played football for fun in the yard with their grandmother. The brothers needed a man on one of the teams, and called therefore on their little brother Messi.
Lionel Messi was at that time only 5 years old, and had quite unusually not touched a ball before. It is unusual because almost all boys in South American countries, receives a football, as their first gift from a very early age. Messi had however, as written, never touched a ball before, but when he had the first couple of touches before his brothers and family, all of which were dumbfounded. Young Lionel showed a unique ball control despite his young age, and especially with the fact that he had never touched a ball. After the episode, his grandmother insisted that she would take him to the training of the local club, Grandoli, where his father was coach.
As 8-year-old Messi switched to the larger club Newell’s Old Boys, and here began his career to take off. With Lionel Messi as the undisputed star, the team lost only one match in four years, and Lionel Messi began to arouse interest in major Argentine clubs.
As 10-year-old Messi was diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency, and the medicine he needed was produced from animals. Messi’s family was far from wealthy and therefore could not afford to pay for Messi’s medicine.
Messi, however, continued his football development, and at age 12 was Barcelona’s former sporting director Carles Rexach in Argentina. Here, he attended a fight with Lionel Messi, and decided immediately to make a contract with Messi and his father. Rexach, however, had no paper on it, and therefore he used a tissue to contract.
Messi moved at age 13 to Barcelona, which paid all costs associated with his medication. Messi was incredibly shy, and had some difficult years as a junior.
He played at Barcelona’s world famous youth academy “La Masia”, where he played with Fabregas and Pique. Messi moved quickly up the system, and was at the age of just 16 years debut at FC Barcelona’s first team.
Lionel Messi – Personal life
Messi lives a relatively private and modest life, and he cares most about his family and friends. He has two sons Thiago and Mateo with his girlfriend Antonella Rocuzzo he has known since his childhood in Rosario, Argentina.
Messi is an ambassador for UNICEF, and also has his own charity: Fundacion Leo Messi “that contribute to welfare benefits for education, sports and hospitals in Argentina.
The French winger Giuly has explained how Messi age of 16 was called up for training with the senior squad; “He smashed all of us … They kicked him down constantly to avoid being made fun of the little boy, but he got up always up and played on. He dribbled often past four players and score goals. He was an alien. ”
At age 16, his debut was in a friendly against Jose Mourinho’s Porto team.
Throughout the 2004-05 season Messi was regular on B-fighters, and senior players wanted him to be brought up in the first team. This gave Messi his debut in an official match against Espanyol at age 17, and he was at the time the youngest Barcelona debutant ever. Ronaldinho was Messi’s mentor the senior team, and the two became friends. It was Ronaldinho who put Messi up for his first goal in May 2005 against Albacete. Ronaldinho chipped the ball over the defense and Messi chipped the ball forward across the keeper.
Barcelona won this season’s La Liga for the first time in six years.
In season 2005-06 Messi was heading into the starting line-up, where he formed the front trio with Ronaldinho and Eto’o. Barcelona won both the league and the Champions League where they won the final over Arsenal in Paris. Messi scored a total of 8 goals in 25 games this season.
In 2006-07 Messi began already at age 19 to establish himself as one of the world’s best players, and in total Messi scored 17 goals in 36 matches in all competitions. It was also during this season that Messi made his first hat trick, and he did against arch rival Real Madrid 10 March 2017. The following month he made the goal that really got people to compare him to Maradona when he against Getafe made a copy of Maradona’s goal against England in 1986.
In June of that season scored Messi also a goal with his hand against Espanyol, which also led to comparisons with Maradona’s “Hand of God”.
2007-08 season was not very successful for Barcelona, and Ronaldinho was sold, after which Messi was Barcelona’s biggest star, and he got the jersey no. 10th
Up to the 2008-09 season servants Barcelona Guardiola as coach, and he came up with new ideas. So far, Messi had played on the right wing, but El Clasico in May 2009 he played as false 9’s, in the 6-2 win over Real Madrid at the Bernabeu, which is Barcelona’s biggest win over their rivals ever. Barcelona won this season the club first “treble”, and Messi scored a total of 38 goals in 51 matches.
Barcelona’s success continued into the new season, as the club became the first in history to win “the sextuble” when the club won the Spanish Super Cup, UEFA Super Cup and World Club Championship. Messi subsequently won his first Ballon d’Or.
The season after Barcelona won La Liga again, and Messi was the top scorer with 34 goals. and won his second Ballon d’Or. The season after Barcelona regained the Spanish Championship for the third year in a row, like Barcelona also won the Champions League. Messi finished the season with 54 goals and 24 assists, and won his three Ballon d’Or.
Messi went on to score goals, and in season 2011-12 he scored 73 goals and made 29 assists, and made more than 10 Hattricks for Barcelona. This season, he scored his 233rd goal for Barcelona, only coming the age of 24, proving to be the top scorer for Barcelona in La Liga ever. Barcelona managed only to win the Copa del Rey.
In the summer of 2012, the Barcelona Tito Vilaonva as coach, and Barcelona won the 2012-13 La Liga season. Barcelona’s game, however, was worse in the second half of the season due to Vilanova’s cancer system that affected the team. Messi scored in the calendar year 2012 a total of 91 goals, and thus became Gerd Müllers record of 85 goals in a calendar year.
After Vilanova stopped as coach, took Gerardo Martino of the 2013-14 season, which was marked by damage to Messi’s case. He scored yet 60 goals in all competitions, thereby winning the golden shoe for the third time in his career. Messi saw this season his best “målstreak” when he scored in 21 league games in a row (a total of 33 goals).
With a hat-trick against Osasuna on March 16, he was the top scorer for FC Barcelona in all competitions with his 370th goal, and thus became Paulino Alcántara record. He also scored hat-trick against Real Madrid, becoming the top scorer in El Clasico ever.
For the first time in five years ended Barcelona, however, a season without winning a single trophy.
In the summer of 2014 employees Barcelona the former Barca player Luis Enrique, and it should prove to be successful. Messi scored a hat-trick against Sevilla on November 22 and took Telmo Zarras record for most goals in La Liga (251 goals). 3 days later, he scored hattrick in Champons League match against Apoel Nicosia and took Raul’s record for most goals scored in the Champions League (71 goals).
It was also in 2014 that Barcelona bought Luis Suarez, but due to his suspension from the World Cup, he had first come to spike in November of the same year. This should be MSN’s first season together, and Messi was pushed back on right Wing.
MSN was immediately successful, and the three strikers scored in the 2014-15 season combined 122 goals, which Messi was the 58th Barcelona also won the club’s second “treble” when the team won 3-1 over the Juventus in the final in Berlin. Messi won then his fifth Ballon d’Or.
Season after the 2015-16 regained Barcelona league and Copa del Rey, but was beaten out of the Champions League by Atletico Madrid in the quarterfinals.
Messi ended, however, the year 2016 with 51 goals, and was thus the most scoring player in 2016, one goal ahead Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Messi, Neymar and Suarez trio have since continued the sublime game and considered by many to be the best attack trio ever.
Messi is considered by many compared to Diego Maradona, who has always been known as the world’s best footballer albeit with Pele. In Messi’s native Argentina has always placed great expectations for the little Argentine, but he has to date not met these.
Messi’s previous peak national team came to the World Cup 2014 in Brazil, where Messi and Argentina played in the final. Here, Argentina lost in extra time to Germany since shifted Mario Götze appeared in 113 minutes, and scored on a post.
Messi made his debut at the Argentine U17 national team in June 2004, where he scored one goal and made two assists in the 8-0 victory over Paraguay. The Spanish Football Federation had over the years tried to persuade Messi to play in the Spanish U17 national team. For this reason organized the Argentine football friendlies against Paraguay and Uruguay to give Messi playing time, and thus assign him the Argentine national team.
One year after the June 2005 was held the FIFA U20 World Cup in Holland, Messi just 18-year-old led Argentina to gold. He helped the team to advance to the group stage, and proved decisive in the knockout phase. Here, he scored the equalizer against Colombia, a goal and an assist against the favorites from Spain, and scored the opening goal against champions from Brazil. In the final, he scored both of Argentina’s goals on penalties when they won 2-1 against Nigeria.
Messi was voted the tournament’s play (Golden Ball) and top scorer (Golden Boot) with 6 goals.
In the month of August, about a month later got Messi debut in Argentina A national team in a friendly against Hungary. However, it was a short debut, as he received a red card just two minutes after being switched on the pitch after 63 minutes.
Messi did get more playing in subsequent matches, and was the Argentina national team coach José Pékermann called a “jewel”.
Messi was therefore selected for Argentina’s World Cup squad ahead of the World Cup in Germany 2006. Messi was however very scarce time, and Argentina were knocked out in the quarterfinals by Germany. Subsequently, Pékermann criticized by the Argentine fans, not to use Messi more.
2010 World Cup Messi bar no. 10, and he played well which led Argentina to the quarter finals. He, however, had problems to score and Argentina were disappointingly eliminated in the quarterfinals with 0-4 against Germany.
World Cup 2014
During the World Cup in 2014, Argentine was considered one of the favorites to win the tournament, and Messi was predicted a big part of many who had also been given the role of leader on the team. Here, he led Argentina to victory in the first game against Bosnia 2-1. Here, he created the first goal and scored himself the second goal after dribbling past three players. In the second game against Iran, he scored a long credentials in overtime against Iran, which ensured Argentina access to the knockout phase. In the last group match against Nigeria, he scored two goals in the 3-2 victory.
In 16 of the final did Messi assistants deep into injury time against Switzerland, which ensured Argentina a 1-0 victory.
Subsequently, in the quarter-final against Belgium, he was heavily involved in the building game that led to the 1-0 goal, which put Argentina in the semifinals for the first time since 1990. Here played Argentina 0-0 in extra time, and Argentina qualified via shootout.
In the finale waited Germany, which has traditionally been Messi and Argentina’s enemy in World Cup context. Germany was the best team in the tournament, but Argentina had in the finals a couple of good chances, the special Higuain had a great burn. Argentina lost 1-0 on a goal by Mario Götze shifted in the 113th minute. Argentina had to settle for silver, however, was Messi was voted tournament play (Golden Ball).
Messi said after the game: “I do not care about the election, I’m just mad about the missed chances. We had some good chances. We showed we could dominate the game, but we knew that we wanted. Right now I care about my grading. I would just like to have lifted trophy and brought it to Argentina. The pain is great.”
2015 Copa América was set to be Messi and Argentina, which was coached by Gerardo Martino. Messi once again played a good tournament, and led Argentina to the final against Chile, who was trained by Jorge Sampaoli. In the finals had Sampaoli devised a “master plan” and managed to close Messi totally out of the game. Higuain should again prove to be the villain when he again missed a great chance in the finals. The game ended 0-0 in extra time, and here lost Argentina in the shootout. Messi received the award as the tournament’s most valuable player, but declined to accept the price of pure disappointment.
The following year was held Copa América Centenario (Century Copa America) in the United States. Argentina was again the big favorite to win, and Messi played dazzling during the tournament. Messi was injured just before the tournament and had to sit out in the first leg. In another match, he came on in the 61st minute against Panama, after which he scored a hat-trick within 19 minutes, and creating Aguero’s goal. In the quarterfinals, he played again phenomenally, when he made two assist and scored a goal in the 4-1 victories, which put Messi up to 54 goals in the national jersey. Leading him to tie the score with Gabriel Batistuta’s record of 54 goals.
3 days later in the semifinals against the United States, Messi took record as Argentina’s top scorer in the national team, with a rocket of a free kick.
Messi played in the game also has two assistants, and Argentina was thus ready for the finals where Chile again waited.
Chile coach Sampaoli managed again to put Messi out of the picture, in what he was guarded throughout the match by 2-3 men. Argentina failed to score on its scoring opportunities where Higuain for the third Finale burned a great opportunity. The game ended 0-0 and Chile won on penalties. A crying Messi announced after the game his stop on the Argentine national team, but changed his mind later.
Lionel Messi – Player Profile
Due to Messi’s height, he has a lower center of gravity than most players and therefore faster movement, which enables him to change direction very quickly, thus avoiding being tackled. Messi is strongest with his left foot, but also a sensible right foot.
Messi’s dribble characteristic style is very unique, as he easily slips away from 2-3 players at a time. His technique is fantastic and can not be compared with any other players when his ball contact is almost always perfect.
He scores goals on the assembly line, and often puts the entire defense chains before he scores. Starting from the right side of the field, Messi is always in a good position to pull into the field, and dribble past the defense, and from there either score or set a teammate up.
His shot is sublime, and both place the ball with precision, leaving no chance for keeper or shoot it hard and accurately. He scores mostly on the outer localized shot along the ground.
In addition to his impressive scoring abilities, and eminent challenges to the opposition, that some consider is due to the ‘glue’ on his feet, he has over the years transformed into a pure world-class playmaker.
Most notably in recent years, under Luis Enrique Messi has pulled back on the field, where he often goes down to the center-line and starts the game up. Here is included, the tiki-taka smaller games where his passes are always accurate. His long passing and stitching is something he really has improved in recent years and he often sends his attacks to colleagues Neymar and Suarez in depth millimeter accurate passes that rips the entire defense chains up.
He is also always a threat on free kick, but especially in recent years, also improved this aspect of his game.
Tactically speaking, Messi a free role on the pitch, where he has 100% freedom to do what he wants, so opponents can never be sure where they have him along.
All Messis qualities combined makes him all defense players’ absolute nightmare.
Lionel Messi – International Titles
Olympic winner in 2008 (Argentina)
FIFA U20 World Cup winner in 2005 (Argentina)
World Championships silver winner in 2014 (Argentina)
Copa América silver winner in 2015 (Argentina)
Copa América Centenario silver winner in 2016 (Argentina)
Lionel Messi – Club Titles
La Primera 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2016
Copa del Rey in 2009, 2012, 2015, 2016
Spanish Super Cup in 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016
Champions League in 2006, 2009, 2011, 2015
UEFA Super Cup 2009, 2011, 2015
World Club Championship in 2009, 2011, 2015
Lionel Messi – individual titles
Ballon d’Or: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015
FIFA World Player of the Year: 2009
The European Golden Shoe: 2010, 2012, 2013
Top scorer in the Champions League: 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 (Shared with Ronaldo and Neymar) 2015
Most assists in the Champions League: 2012, 2015
Top scorer in La Liga: 2010, 2012, 2013
Most assists in La Liga: 2011, 2015, 2016
Top scorer in the Copa del Rey: 2009, 2011, 2014, 2016
Top scorer for the FIFA Club World Cup 2011
FIFA U20 World Cup 2005
Copa América most assists: 2011, 2015, 2016
La Liga All Time Top Scorer Honorary Golden Boot: 2015
Ballon d’Or (5) 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015
World Soccer Player of the Year (3): 2009, 2011, 2012
World Soccer XI Greatest of All Time: 2013
Onze d’Or (3): 2009, 2011, 2012
UEFA Best Player in Europe Award: 2010-11, 2014-15
UEFA Club Footballer of the Year: 2009
UEFA Goal of the Season: 2014-15
FIFA Club World Cup Golden Ball (2): 2009, 2011
UEFA Champions League Forward of the Year: 2009
AS.com La Liga Player of the Year: 2014-15
Trofoe Alfredo Di Stéfano (4): 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11, 2014-15
Don Balón Award (3): 2007, 2009, 2010
L’Équipe Champion of Champions: 2011
LFP Best Player (5): 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
LFP Best Forward (5): 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
La Liga Ibero-American Player of the Year (5): 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
FIFPro World Young Player of the Year (3): 2006, 2007, 2008
World Soccer Young Player of the Year (3): 2006, 2007, 2008
Bravo Award: 2007
Golden Boy 2005
Marca Legend Award: 2009
ESPY Award Best International Athlete (2): 2012, 2015
El País King of European Soccer (4): 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
IFFHS World’s Top Goal Scorer (2): 2011, 2012
IFFHS World’s best Top Division Goal Scorer (2): 2012, 2013
FIFA / FIFPro World XI (8): 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
UEFA Team of the Year (6): 2008, 2009, 1010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015
ESM Team of the Year (7): 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Copa del Rey Top Goalscorer (2): 2010-11, 2013-14
Argentine Sports Person of the Year Award: 2011
Olimpia de Plata (8): 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Gazzetta dello Sport Sportsman of the Year: 2011
2014 FIFA World Cup Golden Ball (best player)
2014 FIFA World Cup Dream Team
FIFA U-20 World Cup Player of the Tournament: 2005
Copa América Young Player of the Tournament: 2007
Copa América Top Assist Provider: 2011, 2015
Copa América Best Player: 2015
Lionel Messi Records
Summary of some of the main Messi records:
- Most Ballon d’Or (the world’s best soccer player): 5
- Most top 3 rankings in Ballon d’Or voting: 9
- Guinness World Record for most goals in a calendar year (only counting games): 91 (2012)
- Most League matches with scoring in a row: 21 matches (33 yards)
- Most league goals in a season: 50
- The fastest player to reach 300 league goals in one of Europe’s five major leagues: 334 matches
- Youngest player to reach 100 matches in Champions League
- Most Champions League Hattricks: 5
- Most Champions League top scorer titles: 5
- Champions League top scorer most seasons in a row: 4 (2008 / 2009-2011 / 2012)
- Most goals scored in El Clasico: 24
- Most assists in La Liga: 121
- All-time top scorer in La Liga: 308 goals
- All tideres Barcelona top scorer in official matches: 449
- Most Hattrick for FC Barcelona: 35