Messi on his exceptional football skills: ‘God chose me’

Lionel Messi spoke about his exceptional football skills and how he maximized them, stating, “God chose me.”

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Messi: “God chose me”

Messi, who celebrated his 37th birthday on Monday, is currently with Argentina for the Copa America in the United States.

The Inter Miami superstar was candid about sharing his football journey with Argentina podcaster Juan Pablo Varsky.

“It’s very clear to me that I was born like this because God chose me,” Messi said.

“It was a gift he gave me. I tried to take advantage of it. I did everything possible to squeeze the most out of it. The truth is, although I did many things, I did nothing to become the player that I already was when I was little.”

Messi’s legendary career began at home club Newell’s Old Boys before joining Barcelona’s youth team at 13.

The iconic striker said he wasn’t aware just how special he was.

“From what was being said, I was always different,” said the 2022 World Cup winner. “People came to watch me. I didn’t realise it, but I began to understand that as I grew older. I don’t really know the moment when I realized it.”

“When I was 3 or 4 years old, I was not aware of the World Cup and all the titles that were being played. I simply played because I loved the ball. It was my hobby. I spent all the time kicking [the ball] and looking for someone to play with, and I was born with it. I loved soccer, like most Argentines, from a very young age, and I always tried to have fun, like I did from day one.”

Messi established himself as arguably the best footballer in history, as he won his 44th trophy after helping Inter Miami hoist the 2023 Leagues Cup in August.

He has won a record eight Ballon d’Or awards, the most recent one being in 2023.

Learning in defeat

Despite all the success Messi has experienced, he said that he also learns from his defeats.

“I don’t like to relive them or review them, but in the long run it helps and makes you grow,” Messi said.

Messi’s most painful defeat was Argentina’s loss to Chile on penalties in the 2016 Copa América.

This defeat led Messi to temporarily retire from international football.

“Without a doubt it was [most painful] because it was already the third final defeat in a row,” Messi said.

“We had had a very good Copa América in terms of play, reaching the final being far superior to the rest.”

“In the final against Chile, although we did not have many clear chances. We were also superior in terms of play and we lost again on penalties.”

Interestingly, Messi and Argentina take on Chile in Tuesday’s Group A showdown.

Argentina began their title-defense bid with a 2-0 win over Canada.