RB Leipzig playmaker Dani Olmo reveals he was forced to take picture with Lionel Messi ‘against his will’ when he was a youngster

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RB Leipzig midfielder Dani Olmo has admitted he was once forced to take a picture with Lionel Messi ‘against his will’ before joining Barcelona’s academy.

Olmo spent seven years at Barcelona’s famed La Masia academy complex from 2007–2014 before securing a permanent move to Dinamo Zagreb the following year.

Messi and Olmo met when the latter was very young at La Masia

Messi and Olmo met when the latter was very young at La Masia

And the Leipzig playmaker, who has made 12 appearances for Spain, admitted he did not welcome Messi disrupting his training session when he was younger.

“One time, before I even joined La Masia, I accompanied my father while he was managing a game at Castelldefels,” Olmo told The Players Tribune.

“I was eight years old. I was playing happily by myself with a ball, when someone — I think it was a friend of my dad’s — came over and told me, ‘Hey, Dani, come here! You’re not going to believe this. You’re going to have your picture taken with Lionel Messi!’

“Apparently, Messi had a friend playing in the Castelldefels game and had come down to see him.

Imagine saying no to a photo with Lionel Messi?


Imagine saying no to a photo with Lionel Messi?

“Wow, Messi, right? In Castelldefels? What kid wouldn’t want their picture with him?

“Well, me! I was like, ‘No, thanks. I’m good. I want to keep playing! It’s just a picture, right?’

“But, against my will, they stuck me next to Messi and took the picture. I didn’t even say anything to him. I just waited for the click and then I went back to my ball, like I was doing him a favour.

Olmo admits the picture is now one of his most valuable possessions and insisted he is grateful that he was forced to take the picture with the footballer that many regard as the best of all time.

He added: “In the end, I have to say I’m glad they forced me, because I’ve still got that picture framed at home. At the time though, I wasn’t happy to have my valuable playing time interrupted — even by an icon.”

Olmo has been a key player for Leipzig this term, scoring three times and adding eight assists in 26 Bundesliga matches.

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