Some magic Messi dust must have rubbed off on Yamal when he was a baby

Some magic Messi dust must have rubbed off on Yamal when he was a baby

Eric Munene 07:58 - 11.07.2024

Both Messi and Yamal were awarded man of the match awards for their semi-final matches

In a heart-warming twist of fate, or a baptism as some might put it, a photograph from 2007 has resurfaced, capturing a moment that now seems prophetic in the world of football.

The image features Lionel Messi, then a young star at Barcelona, tenderly holding a baby in a blue plastic bathtub. That baby, as it turns out, is none other than Lamine Yamal, who at just six months old, was already destined for greatness.

Fast forward to 2024, and Yamal has emerged as a sensation in Spanish football, following in the footsteps of his early mentor, Messi.

Recently, Yamal made headlines by becoming the youngest player ever to participate in a European Championship at Euro 2024, held in Germany. His electrifying performance, including a crucial goal that helped Spain secure a spot in the final, has further solidified his status as a rising star. The story behind the iconic photograph adds layers to their intertwined destinies.

According to Sky News, the snapshot was part of a charity initiative by UNICEF and local newspaper Diario Sport, where lucky families could win the opportunity to be photographed with Barcelona players.

Yamal's family, residing in Roca Fonda in Mataro, seized the chance, leading to the memorable encounter between Messi and the infant Yamal in the Camp Nou dressing room.

Joan Monfort, the photographer behind the shoot, reminisced about Messi's initial uncertainty handling the baby. "Messi is a shy and introverted guy," Monfort recalled Messi being new to Barcelona's dressing room then, "He was suddenly faced with a plastic tub and a baby. It was a challenging moment."

Yet, from that moment onwards, Messi and Yamal's paths have diverged and converged in unexpected ways. Messi went on to achieve legendary status at Barcelona and beyond, while Yamal, inspired by his early connection with the football icon, embarked on his own remarkable journey.

Following Messi's departure from Barcelona, Yamal continued to rise through the ranks, eventually making his mark both for Barcelona and the Spanish national team.

Now even more shockingly, Messi and Yamal have been awarded Man of the Match awards in their semi-final encounters in their respective continents. Both of them scored to inspire their teams to their finals.

The parallels between Messi and Yamal's careers are striking. Both started young, demonstrating extraordinary talent and a deep passion for the game. Messi's influence on Yamal's development cannot be understated. The Argentine maestro's dedication, skill, and unwavering commitment to excellence have undoubtedly left an indelible mark on Yamal's playing style and mindset.

As Spain prepare for the Euro 2024 final, with Yamal poised to make further history, football fans are left to marvel at the enduring legacy of that one photograph.

It captures not only a fleeting moment of tenderness and innocence but also a glimpse into the future of football greatness. Whether by fate or design, Messi's magic seems to have found its way into the heart and soul of Yamal, ensuring that the spirit of football excellence continues to flourish in the next generation.