Luis Lionel Andres Messi was born in Argentina on June 24th, 1987. At a very tender age he started playing soccer at his hometown Newell's Old Boys. He experienced a hormonal deficiency when he was 11 years old. Due to lack of finances to treat him in Argentina, his parents decided to fly him to Barcelona, Spain.
Just 16 years of age during the 2003-2004 seasons, He made his very first appearance in a friendly match between his club and Porto which marked the opening ceremony of the recent Dragao stadium. On 16th October, 2004 he made his debut in an official game in the subsequent championship-winning season against Espanyol which they won at Olympic Stadium by a goal.
Because a lot of first team players were injured in Barcelona squad, the services of few reserve players were requested and from there on Messi became a regular and accepted player in the Barcelona squad. He also became the youngest Barcelona player ever (17years, 10 months and 7 days old) to score a goal in during the league for his club Barcelona FC on 1st of May, 2005.
Several chances were given to him to feature and play for the National team of Spain, but he declined them, rather preferred waiting for the chance to be called upon by his county. Finally, he got the chance he needed when on June 2004; he was called upon for the U-20 friendly game against Paraguay.
In June 2005 wearing the FC Barcelona color, Lionel Messi starred for the U-20 Argentina team that won the same Youth Championship which was played in Netherlands. In the Football Youth Championship, he selected for the Golden Boot as a result of the six goals he scored, and also the Golden Ball for being the finest player in the tournament. Due being a youth at this time, Messi has already being compared with the likes of Pele and Diego Maradona who are the best football players of all time.
Obtaining a Spanish citizenship on 25th of September, 2005 and been able to make his first appearance for the Spanish First Division because beforehand he has been not capable to play due to the fact that there were many non-EU players who had filled up the quota assigned to each club.
His debut in the Champions League was on the 28th September at Nou Camp against an Italian club Udinese. Messi thrilled the audience with many wonderful passes and developed an apparently telepathic relationship the Brazilian Ronaldinho which earned him an amazing standing ovation from over 70,000 fans that were there at Nou Camp. The same year an Italian newspaper honored him Golden Boy 2005 over the likes of Lukas Podolski and Wayne Rooney.
A lucrative and extended contract was awarded to him in September 2005 till 2014. A thigh injury nearly stopped him from representing Argentina in the 2006 World Cup but Coach Jose however took a chance on him. He even scored a goal for Argentina in the 6-0 victory over Serbia and Montenegro.
Diego Maradona has even called him his successor and has given Messi a lofty praise for his efforts.
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