Barcelona Star Lionel Messi Names Idol And Best British Player He's Faced

Barcelona star Lionel Messi may be the greatest footballer of all time, but even he grew up worshiping his idols as a child.

Born in Rosario, Argentina, Messi moved to Spain to join the Blaugrana’s fabled youth academy La Masia in 2000, when he was just 13. He has gone on to break a number of records at the Camp Nou and has helped the club to the most successful era in their modern history.

While Argentina’s all time top goalscorer says he loved watching Diego Maradona, he insists former Valencia and Benfica midfielder Pablo Aimar is actually his idol.

“Of course I admired Maradona, he was a real inspiration for me. Also when Pablo Aimar started to break through, I used to really enjoy watching him play.”

Messi has also named the best British player he has ever faced.

“Over the years we have faced many British teams in Europe and come up against many good players, but I have always had a big respect for Wayne Rooney. He has played at the highest level for many years and is one of the special players of the generation.”

Will Manchester United clinch second in the Premier League? Head to our betting page!