The heartwarming story of Lionel Messi and red ribbon good luck charm journalist gave him
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After guiding Argentina to a World Cup final for the second time in his career by running the show in a 3-0 semi-final win over Croatia, Lionel Messi had a wholesome moment with a journalist.
The reporter, Sofia Martinez of Television Publica, asked questions about the game but her final note was a message to Messi.
She thanked the seven-time Ballon d'Or winner for bringing happiness to so many people through his brilliance on the pitch.
Messi was genuinely emotional at the words. But his most lovely interaction with a journalist came at the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
In Argentina's game, Messi missed a penalty in a 1-1 draw with Iceland and afterwards Argentine journalist Rama Pantarotto gave him his mother's red amulet.
It was handed to him in the hope that it would bring Messi good luck. In Argentina's final group game, Messi scored a stunning goal in a 2-1 win over Nigeria that secured their qualification for the round of 16.
Messi then carried out media duties in the mixed zone when Pantarotto brought up the amulet and assumed he had thrown it away.
To his surprise, the Albiceleste skipper showed him his left ankle with the charm around it and informed him him he had wore it.
Pantarotto could not believe it. and looked at the camera to say, "Mum... Messi wore it," before pointing to the sky.
Messi clearly loved the idea of giving away a red ribbon bracelet away as a good luck gesture.
When Philippe Coutinho was struggling to find form at Barcelona, Messi passed on a similar-looking bracelet to the Brazilian in 2019.
Coutinho still wears the band Messi gave him for good luck back in 2019 🥺❤️ pic.twitter.com/RgWRDtHA1H— Harvey (@LaPulga__10) January 12, 2022
Three years on and Coutinho was still seen wearing it on his wrist for his official announcement pictures when he signed for Aston Villa in January of this year.
Messi also did the same for Argentina teammate Paulo Dybala, who ended up scoring for Argentina against Chile in the Copa America third place play-off wearing it.
"Messi gave me the red ribbon before the game to give me luck and I ended up scoring my first competitive goal for Argentina, so it worked," the Argentine international told reporters after.