Lionel Messi: Inter Miami Star Donates Eighth Ballon d'Or to Barcelona Museum

Lionel Messi: Inter Miami Star Donates Eighth Ballon d'Or to Barcelona Museum

Isaac Darko
February 20, 2024 at 12:19 PM
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  • Lionel Messi has presented his eighth Ballon d'Or to Barcelona as a gift
  • Messi narrowly beat out Haaland and Mbappe to claim the prize last year
  • 7 of his past Ballon d’Or awards are housed in Barcelona's official museum

Lionel Messi has generously donated his eighth Ballon d’Or to the Barcelona museum, even though he received the award during his inaugural season at Inter Miami.

The Argentine phenom parted ways with the La Liga giants in 2021, opting to join Paris Saint-Germain as a free agent.

After spending two seasons in France, the 36-year-old opted to pursue an American dream in Major League Soccer last summer.

Lionel Messi, Ballon d'Or, Barcelona, Inter Miami
Lionel Messi has donated his eighth Ballon d’Or to the Barcelona museum. Photos by Philip Oak
Source: Getty Images

After leading Argentina to a World Cup victory in Qatar 2022, Messi was awarded his eighth Golden Ball in 2023.

The Barcelona icon also played a pivotal role in Inter Miami's triumph in the Leagues Cup, solidifying his status as the most decorated player of all time with 44 major honours to his credit.

Messi's record-setting collection of trophies surpasses the space available in his home for display, prompting Barcelona to assist him in this regard.

Seven of his Ballon d’Or accolades are presently exhibited in the Catalan club’s official museum, with E-Noticies disclosing that the eighth one is forthcoming.

Why did Messi gift his Ballon d'Or to Barca?

According to journalist Miquel Blazquez, the Inter Miami forward has contributed his latest Ballon d'Or award to the Barcelona museum.

"Although he did not win it as a Barca footballer, the Argentine star has made the gesture of giving it up so that it can be displayed along with the other seven he has won," Blazquez said as quoted by SportBIBLE. "Impossible not to miss him."

Shortly afterwards, video footage emerged from the Barcelona museum, showcasing the 2023 Ballon d'Or trophy alongside Messi's additional honours, including his two Golden Boot awards.

The 6 clubs Messi follows on IG

Messi's prominent stature in the sporting realm has garnered him a worldwide fan following, boasting an impressive 499 million followers on Instagram.

However, he maintains a relatively modest count of just 305 accounts that he follows on the platform, primarily comprising fellow athletes and six football clubs.

Inter Miami, Messi's current team, is one of the clubs that Messi follows on Instagram, as noted by Sports Brief.

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Isaac Darko
Isaac Darko is a La Liga, Ligue 1 and Bundesliga editor at Sports Brief with a Degree in Journalism and Communications from Ghana Institute of Journalism (2010)