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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About hastaelgolsiempre

Sam Kelly is an English football writer based in Buenos Aires, specialising in all things Argentina - the national team and the domestic league - and across South America for When Saturday Comes, ESPNFC, The Blizzard, Cube Goal and anyone else who'll pay him. He's also the presenter and producer of Hand Of Pod, the internet's finest - and, it's true, only Argentine football podcast. If you think you can afford him (and you probably can), please feel free to get in touch.
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