GOAT of the Issue – Lionel Messi

Image from commons.wikimedia.org

Image from commons.wikimedia.org

Natalia Fernandez, Staff Writer

Rosario, Argentina June 24, 1987 was the day everyone’s lives changed, the day the soccer legend, the magician, the GOAT, Lionel Andres Messi was born. 

Messi, arguably the greatest soccer player of all time, has done it, putting an end to the GOAT debates against Ronaldo. The 2022 World Cup Champion has had a very successful football career with 7 Ballon d’Ors, more than any other player, and has scored in all stages of last year’s World Cup Tournament. 

In the past, Messi was the star player for FC Barcelona , playing under the organization since he was just 13 years old, and continued to play for the club for nearly 21 years. However, before FC Barcelona, Messi played for Newell’s Old Boys, a Rosario-based club, but left to FC Barcelona in 2001. While playing for Barcelona, Messi had a club record of 35 trophies. Since his debut at 19 years old, Messi achieved 10 La Liga titles and twice he was rewarded with the Best Fifa Men’s Player in both 2009 and 2019. A three time winner of the UEFA Best Player in Europe, 22 times top goal scorer, 10 times player of the year and 4 times player of the season. During his time at Barcelona, he also won 7 Copa Del Rey Championships and 4 UEFA Champions League titles. 

After his departure from the Barcelona club team in 2021, Messi signed with PSG, Paris Saint Germain, where he joined his former teammate Neymar Jr. and international team teammate Angel Di Maria. When playing for PSG this past year, Messi scored a total of 24 goals in 55 games with 28 assists. He has won two titles with the team, Ligue 1 and the Supercopa de Francia. 

With the Argentina International Team, the Argentine has a total of 98 goals in 172 games and 55 assists. Years ago the team won the Summer 2008 Olympics and the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship. In 2021, Messi and the Argentina Team brought home the Copa America after defeating Brazil 1-0, with fellow teammate Angel Di Maria scoring. The International team won the CONMEBOL-UEFA Cup of Champions in 2022. December 18, 2022 Lionel Andres Messi finally became a World Cup Champion. The Final lasted 120 minutes with a tied score of 3-3 until the match turned to penalty kicks to determine Argentina as the  2022 Qatar World Cup Champions. During the match, Messi scored three with a pk in the beginning of the game, a rebound shot in the 3rd minute of extra time and penalty kick in the pk shootout. 

 At just 11 years old, Messi was diagnosed with GHD, Growth Hormone Deficiency Disorder, and had to be injected with growth hormones at 12. Despite his parents not being able to afford proper treatment, young Messi’s soccer skills impressed FC Barcelona, in which the organization paid for his medical treatment and offered him a spot on the team. His struggles as a child inspired him to create the Messi Foundation, an organization dedicated solely to helping children with severe illnesses. Based on Messi’s motto, “Every child has the right to grow up healthy,” Messi desires for all children to pursue their dreams despite their health issues. 

On and off the pitch, Lionel Andres Messi is an inspiration to all, from children to adults he showed to never give up on your dreams and never stop fighting; that all the blood, sweat and tears are worth it in the end.