Leo Messi’s story for ‘France Footbal’ after winning the ‘Golden Ball’ – from life as a young man in Barcelona, to comparisons with Maradona and racing with Ronaldo

Leo Messi lifted his seventh Golden Ball on Monday, continuing to increase his individual record, which seems increasingly difficult to achieve.

This year was one of the closest in the race to be named the best player in the world, but the Argentine surpassed Robert Lewandowski and Jorginho in the votes he received.

It is the first time he has won the precious individual trophy outside the club where he was formed, FC Barcelona.

Paris, the city where he currently plays, witnessed his latest award. France Football, the magazine that gives the Golden Ball, has interviewed Messi after winning his seventh award.

Being Messi on a daily basis

“I have been Messi for 34 years, so I started to get used to it. I am happy with everything that happened, although sometimes I have to admit that I would like to go unnoticed, enjoy life with my family without knowing people. I do not complain. Rather, it is always nice to get a compliment, a smile or someone asking me for a picture. I am used to these and it has become normal for me. So, very good.



“I come from a working class family, my father worked all day and we lived in a very modest neighborhood. But we lacked nothing, thank God. My parents instilled in me respect, especially with others, work and life. Humility. I grew up with these values. “When I arrived in Barcelona when I was 13, I found the same values ​​in La Masia.”

Reject number 10 from Neymar to PSG

“The 10th was for him. I came to a new team to help. It was an extraordinary gesture on his part. I was waiting for him because I know Neymar. We spent time in Barcelona and we are friends. It seemed fairer to me that he kept the number 10. So I got one that I liked (30).


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To be considered the best in history

“I have never said that I am the best in history and I do not even try to have this idea. To me it is more than enough to be considered one of the best in history. It’s something I would never have imagined. It’s something I do not care about, nothing changes. To be considered the best or not. “And I never wanted to be.”

Race with Cristiano for goals

“I always wanted to pass myself by and not look at what others were doing. Cristiano and I held the competition during the same championship for years. It has been wonderful and has helped us grow in our careers. But without seeing each other. “I just wanted to surpass myself to be the best and not the best.”

Comparison with Maradona

“I honestly never compared myself to Diego, absolutely never. I did not pay attention to those comparisons. Some criticisms have upset me in the past. “I did badly in the national team, really, but not for these reasons.”



“I am different from the people I trust, my friends, my family. It may happen that with some people outside of these relationships I am more shy and find it harder to feel comfortable or take more time. “But with the people around me I am a normal person, with a good mood and I try to enjoy every moment.”


“In the game I always had the freedom to move where I wanted, without much respect for the position. All the coaches I had gave me the freedom to move where I wanted and where I could do more harm to the opponent. Off the field, absolute freedom is to spend time with my family, my wife, my children and to enjoy them. I do not know if I felt the pressure in the years I played. “Only the obligation to get results and to be accurate.”

Angry when he loses

“It’s different now. Since I have my own children, when I get home it helps me a lot to put things in perspective. It is true that before their coming to life, when I was alone with Antonella, I spent a lot of time locked up without wanting to talk to anyone or go out on the fault of a loss. When I was young, I grew up hating to lose. I always wanted to win at everything. “I want to win every game.”


He did not celebrate the victory in the 2006 Champions League because he did not play

“I am just sorry I did not do it. I did not understand what was happening. At least I wish I had been on the bench that night. Even my injury (against Chelsea in the 16th round), I took part in the Champions League journey. I was disappointed. I’m so sorry for that episode. We won the Champions League and I was not sure it would happen again because it is a tough race to win. “Then, fortunately, I had the opportunity to enjoy it.”