Lionel Messi: ‘The Einstein of Modern Soccer’.
Lionel Messi arrived the Gala award with anticipation of winning his fifth Fifa Ballon d’or player of the year award. He had been nominated a record nine times alongside, media propagated rival; Cristiano Ronaldo and his Barcelona club mate, Neymar.
The first two months of the year in view and the last two months had him out to injuries. There was also a mandatory summer holiday for most players who ply their trade in Europe, which tells that Messi had just Seven months out of a possible 11 to convince that he is deserving of a record fifth Fifa Ballon d’or award after having finishing second the previous two times to Cristiano Ronaldo. With Fifa’s already overblown image, dark spotted with corruption charges against her executives. There were questionings about the integrity of the football overlords and grand-adjudicators. It was one night for a redeeming photographic shot at the soccer body’s begrime image.
Lionel Messi was no doubt the best player on Earth last year, with the scintillating performance and achievements between February and June last year. We are already aware of his ability and was not amazed to see him unlock new mesmerizing brilliance on the pitch. Last year Messi showed individual brilliance, uncanny telepathy, solving on field problems for Barcelona against difficult opponents from autumn to summer. This was the summary of Messi’s 2014–15 season and he crowned his year with Five prominent club trophies; The Spanish Laliga, the Copa del Rey, Uefa Champions League, Uefa Super Cup and most recently the Fifa World Club Cup. It was a delight to soccer fans and journalists to see Messi return to his deserving place as the top soccer player, two years after finishing second twice in a row and seven years from his first award. His ability to return to top form had been questioned after the 2014 world cup and torrid injuries that appeared to deter and diminish his fine form. The ability to return to and surpass his own touchstone is a ‘longevity of the genius which resides in him’.
Two nights separated Messi from the remainder 26,000 professional players globally. First, it was the champions league match against Bayern Munich; what was dubbed the match of the season. For 80 minutes, Messi was flat, almost non-existential but when the ‘Messi moment’ struck, he ran through a star studded Bayern Defence, ravaging World Cup winning Centre back, Jerome Boateng who effortlessly fell to the ground, like an handicap in dire need of an arms chair before rifling the ball past Neuer. The second was the Puskas nominated solo goal against Athletic Bilbao in the Final of the Copa del Rey. He picked the ball from halfway the right side of the field; running and dribbling past five players, with the ball having a good time at his feet and the Bilbao players running after him like pro-amateurs, before he sent a low shot from the ‘Messi Zone’ past the keeper. Nobody stood in awe or amazement because only Messi can ‘pull a Messi’. How else should the world appreciate this soccer’s Einstein? So, last night at soccer’s most glamorous award event. In front of soccer power brokers, and all tuxedo wearing men. Fifa helped the world deliver our golden gong of appreciation to a man who has made soccer a delight to watch over the last decade..
His youth span might appear latent, but he is only still 29. The age where soccer players peak. The world still has about a few more years to enjoy the scintillating performances of the finest creature to play the round leather ball.