Talking to Lionel Messi’s youth coach ahead of the Copa América Centenario

In April, I headed up from Buenos Aires to Rosario, Lionel Messi’s hometown, for a feature for ESPNFC ahead of the Copa América Centenario. Whilst there, I talked to Ernesto Vecchio, the youth coach who oversaw Lionel Messi’s childhood development for longer than anyone before Messi moved to Barcelona, and to Nicolás Canessa, an occasional team-mate of Messi’s for Newell’s Old Boys’ youth teams and a friend of his to this day, among others. The article I wrote about Messi, his early footballing development and his relationship with Argentina – or rather, Argentina’s relationship with him – is online here. I hope you like it.


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