Lionel Andrés Messi (Widely known as Leo Messi) was born in, Rosario a city of Argentina on 24 June 1987. He is the 3rd child of Jorge Messi and Celia Cuccittini. Jorge Messi, the father of Leo Messi, who is working in a steel factory as a manager in Rosario, and his mother, Celia Cuccittini, worked in a magnet manufacturing workshop to run his family.

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Leo Messi early life

From Childhood Leo belongs to a football-loving family surrounded by older brothers & cousins. At an early age, Leo started playing with his older brothers Rodrigo and Matías and his cousins, Maximiliano and Emanuel Biancucchi. Meanwhile, the cousin of Leo Messi already registered them in professional football.

Leo Messi started playing with them & his father followed the interest Messi and decided to train under him at a local club named Grandoli at the age of four. At an early age, his maternal grandmother influences him most for being a footballer. He was accompanied by his grandmother at an early age during his training & other activities.

Leo Messi Childhood: The Struggle for Football

Leo Messi Childhood
Leo Messi Childhood

There is a renowned club in Rosario named “Newell’s Old Boys” (Although he is a big supporter of his boyhood club) that always attracted him. At the age of Six, Leo joined his boyhood club Newell’s Old Boys. From an early age, Leo used to play with the older aged players.

The people of Rosario started to be amazed by his football Skill. During his six years’ time in Newell’s Old Boys club, he scored almost 500 goals with unbelievable statistics. By their skill & goal-scoring ability the batch named as “The Machine of ’87”.

It is named after their birth year & the team is almost unbeatable along with that they were used to entertain the local people in the half-time of first-team play by their ball tricks ability and skill.

Leo developed as a very promising player, but his body growth was not as much as expected. He is very short at an early age & very shy & introverted type.

There was a story which is described by his boyhood coach that “During his early age Messi was very much uninterested to giving goal by the head and very much a left-footed player moreover he used to give goal by his left foot.

The little magician was very much fond of cookies. So the coach decided to develop his heading skill and offer him for every head goal he would get two cookies.

So Leo decided to play football with the left foot all over the field and whenever he was in front of a goal he transfers the ball from his foot to head gave goals by head & earn more cookies.

It proves the intelligence of Leo also. Leo was a very versatile player from his childhood and his phenomenal skills started to sick attention to all the renowned clubs on both sides of the Atlantic.

 

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Once Messi and his family went to see a football match where his cousin & a little above his age played. Suddenly the coach notice that there was a player short.

So the coach offer small looked Messi to play football to complete the squad. After so much persuasion from his parents, he participated in the match with the elder.

The first ball came he just passed by but whenever the second ball came he controlled and dribble past all the opponents including his brother.

From this magic, he is always a part of the first team for the coach named Salvador Aparicio. Leo Messi become more effective & instrumental in winning the 1st ever trophy for his side.

At the age of 10, Leo faced difficulties in his professional career. He was diagnosed with a “growth hormone deficiency” which was created in his professional career. Leo belongs to a very needy family and his father’s health insurance is only able to pay the two years treatment cost.

The minimum cost of his treatment in a month was $1000 it was almost impossible to bear for his family. So his father started to contact with club regarding his treatment and the club promised to bear his treatment, but later they broke the promise.

Later his father started contact with other clubs like River Plate, but they are also unable to pay the treatment cost due to the economic collapse in Argentina. Later he faced another tragedy as he lost his grandmother & this incident affect him much.

Since then, he decided to remember his grandmother by looking up and pointing to the sky after a goal, till now it is a tribute gesture.

Leo Messi in Barcelona: The Starting of an ERA

Lionel Messi in Barcelona
Lionel Messi in Barcelona

Messi’s family try to arrange treatment facilities for him but was unable during this year. They have some relatives in Catalonia, Barcelona & Messi’s family sought on them to arrange a trial with Barcelona. Finally, in September’2000 they are able to arrange a trial with Barcelona.

First team director & scout Charly Rexach want to sign him immediately by seeing his talent, skill & ability to play.

But another board of directors was not able to take an immediate decision as to the, it was very unnoticed able to sign European foreign players in such an early age but Charly Rexach pushed to other directors as he saw it would be a very good opportunity for signing such a talented player.

On 14 December, the most historic signing happened as Charly Rexach offered a contract to Leo on a paper napkin as no other paper was on his hand & he is not wanted to waste the opportunity to sign Leo.

After the offer, Leo signed for Barcelona & his family shifted near an apartment in Camp Nou- the historic stadium of Barcelona.

At home, he suffered from nostalgia along with homesickness when his mother went back to Rosario together with his brothers and small sister, María Sol, whereas he continued with Barcelona with his father.

Noticeably smaller than most of the kids in his age group, Messi was eventually diagnosed as suffering from a hormone deficiency that restricted his growth & development which was later afforded by Barcelona (Medical bill cover) at the age of 13 whenever he joined the “La Masia”.

During his first year in Spain, Messi very rarely for Barcelona as a transfer conflict with Newell’s; as a foreigner, he could only be fielded in friendlies and the Catalan league. Without football, he feels difficulties integrating into the team as he is already by nature introverted. For his introverted nature, his teammates initially think that he was mute.

LA Masia: The Rise of a Goat

Leo Messi Goals
Leo Messi Goals

In February 2002, after a year of waiting for playing good football for La Masia, Messi finally registered for in the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) & get permission for taking part in all competitions along with other teammates like Cesc Fàbregas and Gerard Piqué. (They are like befriending his teammates to Leo Messi).

Meanwhile, at the age of 14, he completed his growth hormone treatment and become an integral part of the Barça U-14 & Cadet A team.

“Baby Dream Team” which was named as the greatest ever youth side of Barcelona, Leo Messi become the most effective & integral part of the season for the team.

He became the top scorer during his first season for the Cadets A with 36 goals in 30 games, in 2002–03. During this season Barcelona treble of the league and both the Spanish and Catalan cups. During a league match with Barça Cadet A, Leo broke his broken cheekbone.

After one week of this damage before The Copa Catalunya final, Messi was allowed to start the game on in one condition that he would be wearing a plastic protector, so he started the match by using the mask.

Later they won the match by a 4–1 victory over Espanyol, Messi scored 2 goals in the final. At the end of the season, he got an offer from Arsenal, but he stayed in Barcelona although his childhood friend Pique & Fàbregas leave the club for England.

In the 2003–04 season, Leo Messi very aggressively progressed through the club’s ranks with his good performance. In this season he debuted for a record five youth teams in a single campaign and single year.

With Juveniles B, Leo Messi was named player of the tournament in four international pre-season competitions & then he was promoted to Juveniles A.

Before being promoted to Juveniles A Leo Messi only played one official match for Juveniles B. His promotion to the youth team is extraordinary & astonishing to others.

During his time in Juveniles A, he scored 18 goals in 11 league games and kept surprising all other teammates. As a reward for his extraordinary show, he was called up to strengthen a depleted first team during the international break along with some other youth players.

To describe his first-team attempt French winger Ludovic Giuly shares “He destroyed all the first team player … They were trying to kick him all around to avoid being ridiculed by this kid, he just got up and kept on playing on the ball, dribble past four players and score a goal.

Even the first team center-backs were very nervous to face him. He was not from the planet, and he was an alien.” A teenage Leo caught the eye of Frank Rijkaard in his first training session with the first team.

This is how the little magician from rosarian grow from childhood toward his dream and legendary by taking so many obstacles. Leo Messi is a natural talent by born who came to the world to rule and be the goat.

We will continue the unbelievable true story in part two where we know the rise of Leo Messi.