Barça star Messi: Ronaldo was my hero
Barcelona star Lionel Messi has revealed that his idol growing up was actually a Brazilian, in the form of legendary striker Ronaldo.
Messi, 25, grew-up in the era of Ronaldo's dominance of world football, with the Brazilian a three-time winner of the FIFA World Player of the year award - an achievement since matched only by Messi himself and Zinedine Zidane.
"Ronaldo was my hero," Messi told FourFourTwo magazine. "I loved watching players like Zidane, Ronaldinho and Rivaldo, but Ronaldo was the best striker I’ve ever seen.
"He was so fast he could score from nothing, and could shoot the ball better than anyone I’ve ever seen."
Whilst it was once Ronaldo who graced the Camp Nou, it is now Messi who sets the great arena alight with his moments of individual brilliance.
The Argentine will compete for his fourth World Player of the Year award this December, but will face stiff competition, principally from Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo.