VAR check corner: Messi has autism

“Lionel Messi is a pitiful autistic guy!”, that was the comment of famous Puerto Rican singer Anuel AA in a recent interview. That statement caused a storm across the internet. Immediately, people raced to find out and look up information about Asperger’s syndrome, which the owner of 8 Golden Ball titles suffers from.

So what’s the truth? In fact, since Messi was a kid, his parents discovered this. After seeing that their son was stunted, weak, slow to speak, and lazy to communicate, they took him to the hospital for a checkup. The result stunned both: Messi suffered from two diseases, hormone deficiency and Asperger’s.

The sky seemed to collapse, Messi’s parents hurriedly took their son for treatment, with the hope that he would become a normal person in the future. They pamper Messi to the fullest. Almost anything Messi wants is met by his birth father. And when he saw his son showing passion for football, father Jorge firmly declared: “You just need to focus on playing football, let me take care of the other things.”


Fulfilling his commitment to his son, Mr. Jorge let Messi live out his passion for football. He and his son personally went on a long journey from his hometown to Barcelona for a trial. Later, he also took on the role of manager of the Argentine superstar. Even when Messi was accused of tax evasion of 4 million euros, his father also took responsibility…

Back to Asperger’s. It is a form of neurobiological disease discovered by Austrian doctor Hans Asperger in 1944. According to his description, such people can often exhibit neurological disorders, ranging from mild to severe such as limited communication, afraid to appear in public, erratic personality changes and sometimes a bit absent-minded.

In return, people with Asperger’s have the ability to concentrate highly on something they enjoy. Thanks to that, they can achieve great success in a specific field. For Messi is success in football, with a record of winning the Golden Ball 8 times. Singer Susan Boyle; actor, director and film producer Anthony Hopkins; or one of the richest people on the planet Bill Gates… are all people who were discovered to have Asperger syndrome when they were children.


In a recent study by Cambridge and Oxford Universities, it was discovered that two world-famous scientists, Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein, also had Asperger’s. That is the reason why during their lifetime, both of these great men lived eccentric lives and had unusual manifestations in their daily behavior.

In fact, the words that singer Anuel AA said about Messi were also mentioned by football legend Romario. In a Twitter post from 2013, the former Brazilian striker confirmed that Messi has Asperger’s syndrome. However, Romario does not consider it a disease, but sees Asperger’s as a “miraculous gift” that God gave to the Argentine superstar.

“You may not know, Messi really has Asperger’s syndrome. It’s a disease that makes people a little autistic,” Romario shared. Then, he affirmed: “Due to Asperger’s, Messi’s focus was on football. Then he had an extraordinary career on the field.” The 1994 world champion also joked that he hopes to continue to see the autistic Messi reach the highest level with the ball.


I would like to emphasize that the year Romario “revealed” the truth about Messi was also the year that the medical industry officially abandoned the concept of Asperger’s. Instead, people generally call the disease that the Argentinian superstar suffers from “autism spectrum disorder”. Perhaps that’s why from then on, not many people mentioned Asperger’s disease to the owner of the 8 Golden Balls.

Partly because of this syndrome, Messi often limits his appearance at press conferences or events. The star who plays for Inter Miami Club also rarely participates in commercials, especially segments with dialogue. Throughout his career, Messi almost repeated a lonely circle: practice – play football – eat, sleep – practice. The Argentinian star almost leaves housework as well as communication with relatives, relatives and society to his wife Antonela Roccuzzo.


There is a funny story about Messi that is more or less related to Asperger’s disease as follows: In the match between Barca and Levante at Camp Nou in 2015, coach Luis Enrique put captain Andres Iniesta on the bench. The person who replaced Iniesta as Barca’s captain was Messi. However, M10 absent-mindedly forgot his role. It wasn’t until his teammates reminded him that he frantically ran out to shake hands with Levante’s captain and the referee, with a smile to cure his embarrassment. In this match, the Argentine superstar scored a double, contributing to the home team’s 4-1 victory.

It can be affirmed that Asperger’s syndrome has contributed significantly to helping Messi become one of the greatest players in world football history. But that doesn’t mean the Argentine striker doesn’t have to listen to ridicule. In an interview on RMC Sport channel, former French player Christophe Dugarry, defending junior Antoine Griezmann – who was Messi’s teammate at Barca at the time – made insulting words about Leo. He said: “Grizou why should you “twist” in front of a dwarf with autism”. However, later, under public pressure, Dugarry had to publicly apologize to Messi.

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