A whole lot of people don’t actually realise what soccer players do off the field. People today believe some soccer players to be self-centered and greedy, but they simply see what they do inside the soccer field rather than outside of it. What many do not understand is that lots soccer athletes return to society and Lionel Messi is a fantastic example of an athlete that is giving back to society.
All of us understand what Messi touches turns to gold onto the soccer pitch, but did you know he has a heart of gold too?
Lionel Messi. Barcelona’s primary man; Argentina’s revered captain and easily the most talented footballer of the creation.
And unlike other footballers, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner doesn’t make a decision to invest his money on casinos, race horses and other indulgences. Instead, the 30-year-old Argentine forward focuses on charity work — which is centred mainly on children.
This charity work is no doubt a reflection of his own troubled childhood — where he would take nightly shots between 11 to 14 years old to fight his growth hormone deficiency and strengthen his legs. After a 2007 trip to a hospital for terminally ill children, Messi started his own base (The Lionel Messi Foundation) to finance medical research and centers worldwide.
Following an earthquake left the Central American country in ruin, the 2017 European Golden Shoe receiver took time from his hectic footballing program to see “It was overwhelming to see the overcrowded displacement camp, the poverty in which people here live.”
Rosario Children Hospital Refurbishment
Named as a UNICEF goodwill ambassador, Argentina’s all-time top goal scorer gave more than $670000 for the restoration of a children hospital in his hometown Rosario. He flew in physicians from Barcelona to train the local staff!
Sponsoring a 12-year-old boy’s medical bills
Back in 2012, in a nod to his past, Messi vowed to sponsor a 12-year-old boy medical bills for six decades! The boy, an aspiring footballer, was suffering from precisely the exact same expansion hormone deficiency which Messi endured himself when he was young!
Inspiring disabled Thai kids
While on tour in Thailand with Barcelona at 2013, last year’s La Liga top goal scorer took the time and opportunity to meet and played soccer with young disabled Thai kids in Bangkok. The Thai kids came especially from several unique areas of the country!
Never one to close his pocket to charity, the ten-time Argentine Footballer of the Year winner contributed over $350000 to UNICEF for the A Sun For The Kids organisation. Unable to hog the limelight, the cheque was presented by Argentine actor Nico Vazquez.
Just last year, the internet ran riot with the images of six-year-old Afghan boy Murtaza Ahmadi sporting a blue plastic bag with Messi’s name and number.
In his most notable charitable act, Messi really sent him a signed jersey! Ahmadi finally got to meet his idol in the flesh and boy was he excited!
“1 in 11” Campaign
At the beginning of the year, Messi combined forces with tennis superstar Serena Williams as the faces of the “1 in 11” effort — to assist 58 million children that are out of college to get an education. The effort picture was shown during last season La Liga game between Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.
Support for Puerto Rico
Observing the current Mexican earthquakes this year, Messi took to Facebook to express his support and ideas to all those affected by the tragedy: “Saddened by the events which have happened during the last few months, where many individuals have suffered the consequences of natural disasters in Mexico, the USA, Puerto Rico, along with Southern Asia, Sierra Leone and in other areas. My thoughts and support go out to the families of the victims and all those who were affected.”
Doctors Without Borders Donation
After landing a $72783 cash from Argentine newspaper La Razon for defamation, Messi generously given the entire amount to the international humanitarian organisation Doctors Without Borders! The newspaper alleged that Messi wore a toupee and took the performance enhancing drug Nandrolone from the 2014 World Cup finals that of course wasn’t accurate.