On May 1, 2005, 17-year-old Lionel Messi scored his first goal for FC Barcelona, becoming, at the time, the youngest player ever to score in a league match for the Catalan club. Since then, his story has been one of meteoric—and seemingly limitless—success. Now, this compelling and perceptive biography by respected soccer journalist Guillem Balague gets to the heart of the mystery and genius that is Messi. From that first, league-winning season to the present, this chronicle details Messi’s historic feats, analyzing the reasons behind his barely comprehensible success. It examines the integral role he played during the 2008–2009 season, during which Barcelona won the league, the domestic cup, and the Champion’s League, as well as the drive and determination that saw him score an astonishing 91 goals in 2012, becoming—at the age of 25—Barcelona’s all-time top scorer, and win four consecutive FIFA World Player of the Year awards. This account also examines Messi’s international career, during which, after a slow start, he has become Argentina’s second top scorer of all time. This is the story of one of the finest players to ever grace the sport of soccer, the diminutive Argentine who has been named by Diego Maradona himself as his successor and who always plays with a smile on his face at one of the biggest clubs in the world.
You may know a lot of the Messi legend already, but his is still a fascinating backstory. Four Four Two There's certainly some interesting insight and information...particularly Balague's understanding of Argentinian politics, culture and mores. ...The book glows with extended testimonies from those who ever coached or mentored Messi. -- David Stubbs WHEN SATURDAY COMES You may know a lot of the Messi legend already, but his is still a fascinating backstory. Four Four Two There's certainly some interesting insight and information...particularly Balague's understanding of Argentinian politics, culture and mores. ...The book glows with extended testimonies from those who ever coached or mentored Messi. -- David Stubbs WHEN SATURDAY COMES
Guillem Balague is a soccer journalist and a regular columnist for the Spanish sports daily AS and UEFA Champions magazine. He has also contributed to the Observer and the Times. He serves as the Spanish soccer expert for Sky Sports in the UK, and is the author of Pep Guardiola: Another Way of Winning and A Season on the Brink.
Most helpful customer reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful.
Madridista view on Messi
By A. Mcclure
I am real madrid fan and curiosity got me to read this more than anything. I was 16 when Messi made his debut and I remember watching it. I was nervous as I had just spent the last few months arguing on a Internet forum that was not going to amount to anything. That he was another Saviola. Oh how I was wrong. Anyway this is a superb read for any fan of football.
This book gives you a look into the mind of Messi, you grow up with him getting kicked all round rosario. You get to feel the anguish an disappointment when he is forced to leave to europe.
The journey takes you on through Europe starting as the foreigner nobody could talk to and finishing with the one of the greatest players to ever play.
At one point in this book, Messi had been called up for a game for the first team. A lot of the senior players where away on international match. Messi was on the bench and I kept saying to myself 'please bring him on, please' it was surreal here I am a man of 27 who has never met messi but from this book I felt like I have know him all my life and I knew how upset he would have been and from hindsight how he was going to smash.
Great read. Hala Madrid.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful.
Extra Extra Read all about Messi!!!
By Amy N.
As a mother of an eleven year old son who plays soccer on a competition soccer team and has for several years now. Messi is someone who was introduced to me because of him. This year in sixth grade he had an assignment for a production they have done for many many years at his school in sixth grade called the "Wax Museum". Each student needs to read a biography or auto biography on a person who has impacted their life and the world in a positive way. Then on the day the assignment is due all the students dress up as the person they chose and spend the day in the GYM hence "Wax Museum". All the other students in the school come in during their assigned times and get to ask questions from the students participating in the wax museum. This was our book for this assignment and we have enjoyed reading this together. My son learned many new things about Messi, but most of all it assisted him in seeing Messi as a real person and that with hard work, determination, and talent you can achieve your goals & dreams.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful.
You can't help but feel for the kid Messi and cheer for him every step of the way! MESSI MESSI!
I have not finished the book yet but the first few pages will leave you begging for more. Reading about Messi's childhood, his trials and humble beginnings will leave a trail of tears for each page you turn. You can't help but feel for Messi as a young child uprooted from his home in Rosario and the sacrifices he made to reach his dreams. I doubt even he knew the success he has now. It's amazing to know and watch a football genius rise to greatness. His reserve nature, his humility despite his accolades is just refreshing to witness. Seeing him succeed is like seeing a family or a close friend and thus you can't help but feel happy for the guy. And when he loses like the way Argentina lost in the world cup this year, it's heartbreaking and almost unbearable to witness Messi's sullen face. I love reading autobiographies and this by far would be one of my favorites.
Oh and of course, amazon delivery is by far the best!