MOSCOW, Oct. 31 Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva called on the country's footballers to focus on the Argentine striker Lionel Messi.
On Monday, Messi received the Ballon d'Or for a record eighth time – the prize awarded to the best player of the year according to the French magazine France Football.
“”Messi should be an example for Brazilian players. He is 36 years old, he is a world champion, he won the Ballon d'Or and so on. Messi should be an inspiration for children. Anyone who wants to win the Ballon d'Or should fully devote yourself to the business, must be a professional. This is not on par with parties,” said Lula da Silva on the social network X.
The football confrontation between the national teams of Brazil and Argentina is the main one among the countries of South America. The Brazilians became world champions five times, the Argentines three times.
Messi is a graduate of the Spanish Barcelona, where he became a ten-time champion of Spain and a four-time winner of the Champions League. In 2021, he moved to the French Paris Saint-Germain, with whom he won the national championship twice and the French Super Cup once. In the summer of 2023, Messi became a player at Inter Miami, and with the club he won the League Cup. As part of the Argentina national team, Messi became a world champion and winner of the America's Cup.