If you think Lionel Messi gave a young fan the cold shoulder on purpose before Sunday’s 2014 FIFA World Cup opener against Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Argentinian star has some choice words for you.
Messi’s actions went viral when television cameras captured a young fan extending a hopeful hand to the superstar in the pregame handshake line, only to have his idol walk right past him without giving him the faintest acknowledgement.
Messi finally got the chance to defend himself Wednesday.
“How could it be that I did not want to greet the boy?” Messi said on Univision, via For the Win. “I just did not realize he was there. In fact, I spoke to two other children in the line.”
The Argentinian captain reportedly made amends by supposedly taking a picture with the boy he snubbed, although a recent report claims the boy in the photo actually was someone else.
Regardless of whether he eventually found the boy he snubbed or not, Messi insisted he would never purposefully deny a young fan a handshake.
“I would never do such a thing when I have a nephew and young son,” Messi said. “I would never do such a thing with a boy.”
Hopefully Messi’s comments put this story to rest and allow us to focus on his brilliance on the soccer field. Argentina is back in action against Iran on Saturday, six days after Messi’s terrific goal gave his team a 2-1 win over Bosnia and Herzegovina.