5 Interesting facts about Lionel Messi that you may probably not know: At the moment, Compared frequently to football legends like Pele and Maradona, Lionel Messi is considered as one of the best footballers in the world. But aside from his countless goals for Barcelona and Argentina, there’s probably quite a lot most soccer fans don’t know about the star. Here are 5 interesting facts about Lionel Messi.
Interesting facts about Lionel Messi
Growth Hormone Deficiency
Lionel Messi was diagnosed with Growth Hormone Deficiency, which limited his growth when he was just 11. The deficiency resulted in his facing lower immunity, poor vision and also issues with the height. The only treatment was injecting human growth hormone externally. His pain can be felt in his words, “I had to start a treatment to help me to grow. Every night I had to stick a needle into my legs, night after night after night, every day of the week, and this over a period of three years.”
First contract on a piece of napkin
Barcelona technical secretary Carles Rexach was captivated by the brilliance of the then 13-year-old Leo. Rexach was so spellbound by what he had seen that instead of going in to formulate a proper contract, he decided to seal the deal on a piece of paper available instantly – in this case on a paper napkin. That paper napkin has been kept in a frame to preserve it for the ages as the mark of the beginning of a new era in the history of football in Barcelona.
Tribute to his grandmother
Leo Messi has a habit of looking at the sky when he scores a goal. We all see him raising both hands in the air as a part of his celebration. The gesture is known to be his way of thanking his grandmother who was very close to him. He lost his grandma at the age of 10. He always believes that she is up there and watching him from there. That’s his way of showing that he would always be grateful to her.
His debut lasted only for 47 seconds
The Argentine’s international debut in 2005 did not turn out well. He was called in as a substitute against Hungary. Just after 47 seconds was sent off after a red flag for allegedly elbowing Vilmos Vanczak. He felt really bad about this and was also reportedly seen crying in the changing room.
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Goodwill ambassador of UNICEF
Messi established a charity, Leo Messi Foundation, in 2007 which supports access to health care, education and sports for children. The footballer created this charity after visiting a hospital for terminally ill children in Boston. In 2010, he was appointed as a UNICEF goodwill ambassador, taking part in campaigns aimed at HIV prevention, education and the social inclusion of disabled children.