Saturday, July 13, 2024

Lionel Messi sent 160 players Christmas gift – including 13 Premier League stars

Lionel Messi will be celebrating this Christmas having got his hands on the item he always wanted – the World Cup trophy.

It is unlikely celebrations will have truly died down just a week after the Argentinian icon led his country to the ultimate international honour on a historic night at the Lusail Stadium. With the World Cup now on his CV, there is not really much that Messi could want for Christmas.

But he has history of giving rather than receiving Christmas gifts – having provided his own small dose of festive cheer to various opponents in 2020. In the run-up to Christmas that year, Messi scored the 644th goal of his Barcelona career to eclipse Pele’s official Santos record – and he decided to mark the occasion with the help of Budweiser.

After bringing up the monumental tally, Messi sent a personalised bottle of beer to the 160 keepers he had scored past since 2005 to reach that tally. Each keeper was sent bottles, with the amounts depending on how many goals they shipped to the legendary magician, now at Paris Saint-Germain.

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That meant Diego Alves was given the chance of a particularly merry Christmas, as he received 21, specially made, bottles. Real Madrid legend Iker Casillas was given 17, with his long-term replacement Thibaut Courtois getting nine.

There were a number of familiar faces elsewhere on the list, with 13 of those receiving bottles playing in the Premier League at the time, with Manchester United’s David de Gea, Tottenham keepers Hugo Lloris and Joe Hart and Liverpool’s Alisson all getting a couple. Atletico Madrid stopper Jan Oblak and Juventus legend Gianluigi Buffon both thanked Messi on social media for their surprise gift.

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