EXPLAINED: Why Lionel Messi Refused To Sign A Female Fan’s Shirt

Barcelona’s Lionel Messi reacts.

REUTERS/Albert Gea

Lionel Messi almost always seems to find himself in the news, usually by merit of his brilliance. With Cristiano Ronaldo now having departed from La Liga, his superiority in Spain is unquestioned and unchallenged, and he remains amongst the best to have graced the great game.

However, he recently made it in the news for all the wrong reasons, as a video went viral wherein a fan was abusing him at the airport for not signing her shirt. The encounter has left many to be confused over the Argentinian’s choice to not do such a simple task, and now, the reason has been revealed.

As per Mirror, the lady in question was wearing a Rosario Central shirt and it was this shirt that she was cheekily asking Messi to sign.

For context, Rosario is an Argentinian club whose arch-rivals are none other than Newell’s Old Boys, Messi’s boyhood club, and the only other team he represented prior to Barcelona.


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As of such, it is understandable why the superstar shied away from signing the shirt, as the fan might as well have asked him to sign a Real Madrid jersey, and it does appear as if the 31-year-old would have been more inclined to do that than for the Argentinian rivals.

The woman in question went on to call Messi “pecho frio” meaning “passionless”, which is an utterly absurd thing to attribute to a player of his list of accolades.


Messi has previously stated that he would love to rejoin Newell’s Old Boys before retiring, with an ESPN interview quoting him: “I would love to [return]. It is something I have kept an eye on because it was my dream as a child.


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“Obviously my life started to change and went another way, but I have no regrets. It’s something I have kept an eye on. I want to play in Argentine football and Newell’s, where I grew up.”

The club’s vice-president Cristian D’Amico is aware of this, as he has revealed: “I am convinced, like many of my peers, that we can make history as a club if we get the best player in the world in a Newell’s shirt. I think we’re going to get the pleasure of Messi wearing the shirt.

“Imagine a game with Messi in the Coloso [Estadio Marcelo Bielsa], with the press around the world. The sponsors who would come… that would make a difference economically, apart from the sentimental value, and could make a big difference to clean up the debts.”