squad | 2015-12-18
Messi: "I deal with fame very naturally, I enjoy life and the free time I have with my family and friends"
Lionel Messi talked with the magazine Gente, revealing more personal details about his life and career.
Who was the first person who you saw playing football in real life, on TV, anywhere, that made an impression on you?
I never followed anyone in particular, even though when I started being aware of things Diego (Maradona) came back to Argentina. It was during 1993. From Spain he came to Newell’s and he joined the national team that qualified to the World Cup in 1994. If there was someone that inspired me, it was him without a doubt.
Does playing football still entertain you? Could that be the determining secret of the fact that you’ve been the player in the world for a decade?
I always enjoy playing football. I don’t know if that’s the secret or not. I do know that it’s what I enjoy the most and that I will keep doing it as long as I can.
When you sleep, do you dream of various plays?
I dream regular dreams. My life doesn’t revolve around football. I play it when I have to as a professional or when I want to have fun with friends, but I assure you that it’s not my whole life.
Tell me a relevant advice that you’ve gotten about your profession and who it was from.
I have gotten a lot of advice from a lot of people. You take the things that you think are good for you. However, I place special emphasis on the values that a sport like mine can give you.
What advice would you give to the millions of kids that admire you and want to play football?
I’d tell them to have fun, to enjoy it without pressure and to learn that, before anything else, football is a game.
If you were asked to divide your main sporting attributes in three parts, what percentage would you give to talent, to work and to your intelligence on the pitch?
I train hard during the week with the idea of being well physically so that during the game I can do the things I try to do. What happens is that on the pitch things don’t just go your way because you’ve practiced them a lot. The circumstances are different from those of a training and during the competition situations turn out differently depending on the moment.
Everyone loves you, everyone idolizes you, and everyone copies you. Why do you assume God elected you to be Lionel Messi? Are you grateful for that or is it a burden?
Just as there are great professionals that save lives or build things that make us live better, I got to play football so that others are entertained by watching me and generating polemics during the week… And I’m very grateful that it’s like this.
How do you manage your huge popularity?
I try to do it naturally. Like any person I go out, I enjoy life and the free time I have, with my family and friends and, of course, I also enjoy the good things that this profession gives me.
Speaking of that, did football give you everything?
From a professional and a social point of view, yes, without a doubt and it gave me security. The thing is that there’s another aspect, the family one, in which football doesn’t intervene, and which I think is very important, even fundamental.