Lionel Messi via ESPN FC YouTube, screenshot

If you’re looking for a professional athlete that fully encapsulates old fashioned values such as family, masculinity, and being a good person to others, Lionel Messi is probably that guy to point your kids towards as a role model, whether they’re soccer fans or not.

Lionel Messi with his wife Antonela Raccusso via ALL ABOUT YouTube, screenshot

I recently stumbled upon an article that perfectly sums up why Messi is not only a sporting genius, but also a solid role model off the pitch. Examined by Gina Florio from Evie Magazine, this piece not only highlighted his phenomenal football journey, but underscored the aspects of his life that make him truly special.

Recently, we published a few pieces here at Bounding Into Sports regarding UFC Bantamweight Champion Sean O’Malley‘s “open marriage.” For those of you who have been lucky enough not to be disturbed with the knowledge of what this marriage without marriage arrangement is, let me explain briefly.

Sean O’Malley wants to go around sleeping with as many women as he wants whenever, wherever, while his wife is at home with their child. He thinks he can do this because he’s a “King Kong” mega-fighter celebrity who can get away with this degenerate behavior because he’s rich.

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Many of you across social media had issue with it. Even UFC legend Vitor Belfort thinks O’Malley’s ways are disgusting. This is why when I came across this piece scrolling on X titledWhy Lionel Messi Has Reportedly Never Touched A Woman Other Than His Wife,” it grabbed my attention.

Let’s be honest, we’ve all marveled at Messi’s nimble footwork and skills on the soccer field, but it’s his life outside the stadium that struck a chord with me.

As Florio aptly mentions, Messi’s “sportsmanship, humility, and philanthropy” paints a vivid picture of him as a “responsible global citizen.” The man’s not just about winning matches or scoring goals; he’s committed to making the world a better place. The Leo Messi Foundation, focused on aiding vulnerable children, speaks volumes about his character.

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What really resonated with me is his undying dedication to his wife, Antonela Roccuzzo. I think in a world where the lines often blur between professional and personal lives, especially for celebrities, Messi stands out. Florio writes, their love story is “one of the sweetest… that has captured the hearts of many.”

Now, I’m sure for us guys, many of us remember our women showing us pictures of their ‘Wedding of the Century’ in 2017, but here’s the golden nugget from Florio’s piece that got me thinking: Messi’s unwavering commitment to Antonela. His approach to photographs with other women is a case in point. He’s meticulous, even a little physically uncomfortable, yet always ensuring there’s a respectable distance when around other women.

As Florio describes, “He never lays his hands on another woman because to him, physical intimacy remains only for his wife.” This might sound like a drop in the ocean, but in today’s world, it’s a testament to Messi’s values and respect for boundaries.

There’s a lesson here for all of us. Messi showcases that it’s possible to be at the pinnacle of one’s career and yet remain grounded. He’s a beacon for young men who value traditional ideals.

Being loyal, having integrity, respecting boundaries, and valuing family – Messi’s life is a masterclass in these tenets.

Kudos to Florio for throwing light on this lesser-known side of Messi. While his soccer feats make headlines, it’s this real King Kong’s off-pitch persona that truly makes him a good role model. For the young men out there – Messi’s more than just a soccer legend; he’s a shining example of the man you’d want to be, and he didn’t have to dye his hair like the clown from It to get people’s attention.

Follow Remso at @HeyRemso on X

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