By Ghulam Haider
The 2022 Fifa World Cup ended with a bang on December 18 after Messi-led Argentina defeated France in a sensational final and took home the golden trophy after 36 years since the country’s last victory.
Argentinian striker and football star Lionel Messi, 35, was the highlight of the game as he scored two goals for Argentina and led the country to its win. Afterwards, Messi was named the player of the tournament and marked his first World Cup win after taking home seven Ballon d’Ors and 38 other trophies throughout his career.
Amid the victory, the most heartwarming moment came when Messi was joined by his wife Antonela Roccuzzo and their three sons on the field as they exchanged hugs and kisses. Roccuzzo donned a deep purple jersey with Messi’s name on it and paired it with distressed jeans and white trainers for a casual look.
Antonela Roccuzzo’s fairy-tale romance with Lionel Messi
Messi and Roccuzzo’s love story is truly one for the books. The pair met when Messi was only five years old and was already playing for the Newell’s Old Boys. He befriended Lucas Scaglia who happened to be Roccuzzo’s cousin.
Later, the two dated for four years before confirming their romance publicly during the 2010 World Cup. Messi proposed the same year but they eventually tied the knot in 2017 in their gorgeous hometown of Rosario, Argentina.
Argentina’s ‘wedding of the century’
At the time they got married, Messi was already a famous football star and thus they didn’t hold back for their OTT wedding.
On June 30, 2017, the couple tied the knot at a five-star hotel and casino in Santa Fe province. The celebration was attended by 260 exclusive guests.
Their wedding – dubbed the “wedding of the century” by local newspapers – was attended by many of Messi’s football mates like Luis Suarez, Neymar and Gerard Piqué along with pop star Shakira.
Roccuzzo, 29 at the time, wore a Rosa Clara wedding gown with heart-shaped lace back and a sweeping train.
She remains humble and very low-key
According to Vanity Fair España, Roccuzzo has a bachelor’s degree in humanities and social sciences from the National University of Rosario. She also studied dentistry, but left her postgraduate studies to be closer to Messi.
The middle child of three children, she is also known for her low-key personality. A source told the same publication: “She has always had a low profile. When it became known that she was dating Messi, during the World Cup in South Africa, they had already been together for more than three years and it was very difficult to capture an image of Antonela.”
Lionel Messi and his wife Antonela Roccuzzo first met when they were just five and now have three children and have build a million-dollar brand together
The woman who stole Messi’s heart is now possibly the most famous woman in South America. Today she’s a philanthropist, a multi-millionaire influencer, a children’s fashion label owner and an animal lover.
How did Antonela Roccuzzo meet Lionel Messi?
Growing up, Messi was good friends with fellow soccer player Lucas Scaglia. According to CNN, a young Messi would often be found hanging out at the Scaglia household, hoping to see his friend’s cousin, Roccuzzo.
At 12-years-old, Messi left Argentina to join Barcelona’s soccer team. Messi and Roccuzzo didn’t see one another for years, reconnecting later on.
What does Antonela Roccuzzo do for living?
At the National University of Rosario, Roccuzzo earned a Bachelor’s degree in humanities and social sciences, then planned to study dentistry, Vanity Fair España reported. However, after six months, she decided to instead leave her studies and move to Spain to be closer to Messi.
Roccuzzo now works as a model and social media influencer.
How Lionel Messi describes his wife?
In a 2019 interview with Marca, Messi was asked what he admires most about his wife. He replied, “Everything.”
“She has many good qualities: how she gets by on a daily basis; her personality; she is always in a good mood; and she always faces up to problems in an admirable way,” he told the publication.
The soccer star added that Roccuzzo is a “very intelligent person who is great in all aspects of life.”
With nearly 26 million followers, Rocuzzo has a huge Instagram presence, sharing sweet moments with her husband and family.
She notes in her bio, though, that she does not have Twitter or Facebook accounts.
There are, of course, several homes. They include a £10million mansion just outside Barcelona with views of both the beautiful Catalan hills and the Mediterranean coast.
There are others in Ibiza, Miami, and their home town of Rosario in Argentina. There they have a house called The Fortress with 25 rooms, including a playroom for sons Thiago, Mateo and Ciro.
It is, according to friends, where the Messis plan to retire. And that would take the handsome couple full circle back to when they met in 1993, when their fairy-tale romance began.
Messi and his wife own several homes. They include a £10million mansion just outside Barcelona with views of both the beautiful Catalan hills and the Mediterranean coast
Messi looks towards the sea of blue supporting his team (above) during the semi-final in Qatar where his wife was cheering on the best player on the planet in today’s World Cup final
Because their love story, particularly compared with those of most footballers who tend to meet their WAGs in gaudy nightclubs or on social media, is just that.
Antonela is the cousin of Messi’s 30 31 childhood friend Lucas Scagilia.
Back in the early Nineties, when the footballer-to-be first laid eyes on her, he asked: ‘Who is she?’ ‘Antonela, my cousin,’ replied Scagilia.
According to Scagilia’s father, Messi ‘could not look away from her for a second’. She visited the neighbourhood for two days, and Messi immediately knew he wanted to be with her for ever.
Whenever she stayed at Scagilia’s house, Messi would find an excuse to visit in the hope that he could catch a glimpse of her.
Often, this would be at weekends. He would write her love letters and told her that when they both grew up she would be his girlfriend.
They remained in contact, with Antonela going to watch Messi and her cousin play for the Newell’s Old Boys club in their younger days.
As his career blossomed, Messi moved to Barcelona when he was 13 but the pair remained in contact.
Five years later, tragedy bought them back together. Antonela was devastated when her best friend Ursula Notz died in a car accident. Messi was so concerned about his childhood crush that he flew back to Argentina to comfort her.
True love! Lionel Messi has known his wife, Antonela Roccuzzo, since they were children.
“The truth is that [I admire] everything [about Antonela],” the soccer star gushed to Marca in an October 2019 interview. “She has many good qualities: how she gets by on a daily basis; her personality; she is always in a good mood; and she always faces up to problems in an admirable way. She is a very intelligent person who is great in all aspects of life.”
Messi first met Roccuzzo when he was 5 years old in their native Argentina. Despite a sweet friendship, the professional athlete left home at age 13 to pursue his soccer training in Spain. They eventually reconnected in 2005 after Messi found out that the model’s best friend had died in a fatal car accident. The Paris Saint-Germain F.C. athlete flew back to his hometown to comfort Roccuzzo, nearly four years before they publicly confirmed their romance.
Messi proposed in 2010, two years before welcoming son Thiago. The couple — who also share sons Mateo, born in 2015, and Ciro, born in 2018 — wed in July 2017 in their hometown of Rosario, Argentina.
“That he chose his city, to choose Rosario to come to marry, to bring his companions of Barcelona and other guests to discover the city that saw him grow … it’s just who Leo is,” Messi’s former coach Enrique Domínguez told CNN at the time. “A guy with affection, with memory, a grateful guy because being who he is, he could have been married in the best place in the world.”
“You grow and you learn. You gather experience in all aspects of life, on and off the field,” the Ballon d’Or winner told Marca in 2019 of fatherhood. “But, as a human being, having three children changed my perspective on life, my way of thinking and it also helped me grow.”
He added at the time: “Even though there are few moments of respite at home with three kids, [Antonela and I] try to enjoy every second with them, whether it is watching the TV, playing or whatever. We like to stay at home and enjoy these moments.”
Roccuzzo and the pair’s sons dutifully watched Messi compete with Argentina’s national team in the 2022 World Cup championship, which they won that December.
Shortly after the former FC Barcelona athlete reunited with his former childhood crush after the death of a mutual friend, they publicly debuted their romance in 2009.
One year later, the pair got engaged.
The twosome announced in June 2012 that they were expecting their first child. Son Thiago was born on November 2.
The dietician gave birth to son Mateo on September 11.
The twosome wed in a star-studded ceremony in their hometown, including Messi’s former teammate Gerard Piqué and his now-ex Shakira. (The former couple announced their split in June 2022.)
Ciro completed the soccer star’s family on March 11.
Roccuzzo and Messi were all smiles during a date night in Sitges, Spain.
The family of five wore matching red pajamas on Christmas.
“I love you so much, my love❣️,” the mother of three gushed in Spanish via Instagram, sharing kissing snaps with her man in front of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
Messi posed with Roccuzzo and their family dog after recovering from his bout with the coronavirus.
Roccuzzo and her sons matched in white outfits during a family lunch with Messi.
“Momentos ❤️❤️,” Roccuzzo wrote via Instagram, sharing a cuddly snap with her man.
The family of five were all smiles amid Messi’s World Cup tournament.