Inter Miami superstar Lionel Messi brought his latest Ballon d’Or award back to the team faculty and showed it off to the academy players on Thursday.
Miami’s academy posted a video with clips of Messi interacting with youngsters as he posed for group photos with the team and the trophy.
The 36-year-old recently won his eighth Ballon d’Or award after leaving behind the likes of Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe.
The video on
Messi then took time to exchange handshakes and hugs with a group of players before taking a group photo and then repeating the process with a younger team.
Lionel Messi presented the Ballon d’Or award to Inter Miami’s youth academy teams
Messi recently won his eighth Ballon d’Or trophy, beating Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe
He was then joined on the field as he took photos with both groups of players and their coaches.
Miami president and co-owner David Beckham presented Messi with the Ballon d’Or after winning his eighth crown, including Erling Haaland, Kylian Mbappé and Kevin de Bruyne.
The Argentina captain’s claim to the Ballon d’Or came on the back of his World Cup heroics last December, when he scored seven goals to inspire his country to a historic victory. Shortly afterwards, he left Paris Saint-Germain in a record-breaking deal to join Miami.
Despite missing the MLS playoffs, Messi’s impact was immediate as Miami was bottom of the league before his arrival. Within two months he led the team to its first club trophy after winning the first Leagues Cup in August.
In September, Miami participated in the final of the US Open Cup, but lost to the Houston Dynamo.
As for the MLS regular season, Messi only played in six games due to injuries and international commitments. During those matches he scored a goal and two assists.
Messi and his Miami teammates had recently prepared for a short trip to China, which was scheduled to host two friendly matches, but the tour was recently canceled due to unforeseen circumstances.
The tour promoter, NSN, said the decision to cancel was out of respect for Chinese officials following the death last week of the country’s former second-ranking leader, Li Keqiang. For ten years he was China’s top economic official.