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1. He has scored at least seven goals against every other LaLiga Santander team

All LaLiga teams naturally fear Messi when he comes up against them, with the No 10 having netted at least seven times against all 19 of the other sides currently in the top division. Over his career, he has faced 40 different clubs in the Spanish top flight, with only three yet to concede against him: Cadiz, Murcia and Xerez.

Euro 2021: 5 things you might not know about Lionel Messi
Euro 2021: 5 things you might not know about Lionel Messi

2. He first played with fellow Barca captain Gerard Pique in 2000

Messi and his current Barcelona teammate Gerard Pique have spent most of their footballing lives together. They were both in the same team in Barcelona’s La Masia academy, along with Cesc Fabregas – part of the so-called “generation of ‘87” and conquered almost every challenge in their path.

These players would go on to achieve great things and, although Pique spent time at Man Utd and Real Zaragoza before returning to Barcelona, they have both been in the Blaugrana first-team squad together, playing 471 matches together. Messi has only played more often alongside Sergio Busquets and Andrés Iniesta.

3. He pays tributes to his grandmother after every goal

The sight of Messi pointing towards the sky with both hands after scoring a goal has become an almost weekly occurrence in LaLiga but not many people know its meaning. It is, in fact, a tribute to Grandmother Celia, who Messi credits with sparking his interest in football and supporting him as he took his first steps.

4. He could have played for Spain at international level

Messi has represented Argentina throughout his international career, but he could have been wearing the red of Spain had he accepted an offer to join the national team of the country where he has spent his entire professional career. Euro 2021 fans can book Spain Euro Cup Tickets on our website on exclusively discounted prices.

Euro 2021: 5 things you might not know about Lionel Messi
Euro 2021: 5 things you might not know about Lionel Messi

After spending his childhood in Barcelona, he was eligible to play for the 2010 world champions, but Messi says the idea never crossed his mind. The rest, as they say, is history as he has gone on to become Argentina’s all-time top scorer with 70 goals.

5. His footballing idol was Pablo Aimar

Many up-and-coming players consider Messi. He was fellow Argentina and former Valencia and Real Zaragoza playmaker Pablo Aimar. They faced each other on several occasions, when Aimar came up to the Messi, an unused sub on the night, after the game to offer him his shirt. He still treasures that jersey to this day.

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