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Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World Cup

Lionel Messi was born for greatness. How else could one explain his magical run for his club and his country, gathering a dizzy array of trophies and awards

Published: Jun 24, 2023 11:18:19 AM IST
Updated: Jun 24, 2023 11:58:12 AM IST

The accomplishments of the mild-tempered Argentine legend, who wears the no.10 jersey for both his national side and club, are just mind-boggling: ten La Liga titles, four UEFA Champions League titles, three FIFA Club World Cup trophies, seven Copa del Rey titles, three UEFA Super Cup titles, six European Golden Shoe awards, a seven-time record winner of the prestigious Ballon d’Or, all-time top goalscorer for FC Barcelona title and eleven Player of the Match awards at the World Cup tournaments. And then the most decorated player in history with 43 trophies, among them: U-20 World Cup, 2008 Olympic Gold, Copa America 2021, 2022 UEFA Cup of Champions and 2022 FIFA World Cup. He couldn’t ask for more.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Shaun Botterill /FIFA via Getty Images

FIFA World Cup 2022

Lionel Messi hoists the FIFA World Cup Trophy after leading his team to victory over France on December 18, 2022, in Lusail City, Qatar. The Qatar tournament was Messi’s last attempt at a title he coveted most, and his will prevailed. Messi was awarded the Golden Ball of the Tournament for his performance.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Elianto/Mondadori via Getty Images

Finalissima 2022

Lionel Messi and his Argentine teammates celebrate with the Finalissima trophy, thrashing Italy 3-0 in the final in London, England, June 1st, 2022. Held only twice before, the third edition’s victory featured two assists from Messi, resulting in goals as they thrashed Italy 3-0.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: MB Media/Getty Images

Copa America 2021

Messi hadn’t won any international trophies for Argentina until this. Messi finally added one to his never-ending list, and how! He took the team single-handedly to the summit, helping in almost all of the goals scored by Argentina until the finals. Conmebol-Copa America Trophy was theirs, beating Brazil at Maracana Stadium on July 10, 2021, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Koji Watanabe/Getty Images

Olympic gold medal 2008

Argentinian forwards Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero show off their gold medals at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games on August 23, 2008, in Beijing, China. Messi’s exquisite pass to Angel di Maria, who lobbed it in, won the gold for Argentina, beating Nigeria 1-0. “The Olympic gold in 2008 is the win that I value the most because it is a tournament that you may play only once in your life and involves many athletes from different disciplines,” Messi told Spanish Esquire during an interview in 2017.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images

FIFA Under-20 World Cup 2005

Messi was just 18 years old and proved his worth to the world, scoring two penalties in the final to secure a 2-1 victory over Nigeria on July 2, 2005, in Utrecht, Netherlands and with it the U-20 World Cup trophy. Messi ended the tournament with the Golden Boot and the Golden Ball awards.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Llouis Gene / AFP

La Liga For FC Barcelona

Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi and Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez, with their children, celebrate becoming La Liga champions after winning the Spanish League football match between FC Barcelona and Levante UD at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on April 27, 2019. Messi scored the only goal in the win. With Messi, FC Barcelona has won the La Liga Trophy a record ten times.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Jose Breton/Pics Action/NurPhoto via Getty

Copa del Rey for FC Barcelona

Lionel Messi of Barcelona FC heads a goal during the Copa del Rey final match against Athletic Club Bilbao on April 17, 2021, in Seville, Spain. Messi scored two goals in another masterful performance, dominating the final. With Messi, FC Barcelona has won the Copa del Rey a record seven times.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Fadel Senna / AFP

Supercopa de Espana for FC Barcelona

FC Barcelona FC's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi carries the cup of joy as they celebrate winning the Spanish Super Cup final 2-1 against Sevilla FC in Tangiers, Morocco, on August 12, 2018. Messi became the most decorated player, winning Supercopa de Espana seven times with FC Barcelona.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: VI Images via Getty Images

UEFA Champions League for FC Barcelona

Spectators wave a huge mural of Lionel Messi as Superman during the UEFA Champions League final match between Barcelona and Juventus on June 6, 2015, in Berlin, Germany. FC Barcelona won the League 3-1. Messi scored ten on the way to the final, including a hat-trick, eventually winning UEFA Champions League four times with FC Barcelona.
 

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Adria Puig/Anadolu via Getty Images

FC Barcelona all-time top goal scorer

FC Barcelona’s Lionel Messi breaks down during the press conference explaining his farewell from the club on August 08, 2021. Messi scored the most goals in La Liga history, notching 474 goals in 520 matches during his 17-year stay at the Nou Camp club.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: AFP

Ballon d'Or award

Lionel Messi won the men's Ballon d'Or award for a record-extending seven times. A combination of photos shows Barcelona's forward receiving the Ballon d'Or football award (top, L to R) for the years 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012; (bottom, L to R) 2015, 2019, 2021, the award displayed at the ceremony in Paris on November 29, 2021.

Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Albert Geb / Reuters

Golden Boot award

Lionel Messi holds the Golden Boot award aloft before the match with Deportivo de La Coruna at Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain on December 17, 2017.

European Golden Boot is a trophy presented each season to the leading goalscorer in league matches from the top division of a European national league. Lionel Messi is the only player to win the award six times, all with Barcelona. As of January 2023, Lionel Messi was FC Barcelona's all time top goalscorer, with a total of 672 goals.


Lionel Messi turns 36: Here are some of his legendary achievements, from the 2008 Olympic Gold to the 2022 FIFA World CupImage: Alexander Scheuber/Getty Images for Laureus

The Laureus Award

The Argentine legend picks up Laureus World Sportsman of the Year and Team of the Year Awards at a star-studded ceremony in Paris on May 08, 2023. Messi became the first athlete to win both awards in the same year, as the greatest footballer of his generation, arguably of all time, as he inspired Argentina to a dramatic victory at the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

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