Italian Soccer Star Antonio Cassano Names Newborn Son ‘Lionel’ After ‘Greatest Player of All Time’


Antonio CassanoAntonio Cassano doesn’t do anything by the book — on the soccer field or off it.

The Inter Milan and Italy star took his trademark maverick behavior to a new level by persuading his wife Carolina to name their newborn son “Lionel” — in honor of the Argentine supertar Lionel Messi, according to World Soccer.

“This is the second biggest joy in my life after the birth of my first son,” World Soccer reports Cassano told the television show Undici. “I named him Lionel because I’m a massive fan of the best player in history. My wife wasn’t keen, but I then convinced her

“In my opinion Messi is the most important player in history. I’m in love with him on a footballing level.”

Lionel Cassano only came into the world on Monday, but he already has a lot to live up to. His father has played for four of the world’s biggest clubs (Real Madrid, Inter Milan, AC Milan and AS Roma) as well as Italy’s national team. His namesake is, well, arguably the greatest soccer player of all time.

Young Lionel won’t worry about matching his dad’s feats anytime soon. His first order of business will be getting the better of older brother Christopher Cassano, 2, on the field in the backyard and at the kids’ table in the Cassano house.

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Photo via Facebook/Antonio Cassano

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