Register Login Scores

Messi/Ronaldo/Neymar Watch

'Messi Scored 12 Goals In Training One Day, But We Let Him Go'

FC Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi made his way to Spain as a young boy, but his early career might have been very different had River Plate signed him after he impressed during a trial.

Ronaldinho: I Want Neymar To Join…

The forward was offered a trial at River Plate in Argentina as a youngster, but was never signed by the club as they reportedly could not afford to spend money on the necessary treatment he needed for his battle with a growth hormone deficiency.

One of the River's former youth coaches, Eduardo Abrahamian, feels the club made a mistake in not signing Messi.

"He really made an impression on me in that first session, he was small, that was not a problem for us as we were looking at his technical skills, which he had in abundance," he said, according to Marca.

"He was really impressive, in the practice he scored around 12 goals, it was incredible. He was three or four days in Buenos Aires, I called the club's director general and told him to come because we had something really surprising, his technique, pace, the way he left behind other players.

"They had to speak with his father to get him to come to River. I wanted him in the club but I needed to find accommodation for his father so that he could bring his family over.

"I wanted him here as you don't see a player like Leo every day. I gave my opinion that you can't let a player like Messi go. I said that he was a player with great quality and I was told that they already had a lot of players with those qualities and that Leo wanted to go home.

"The club did not understand what the investment was going to be. When Boca (Juniors) invested in Diego Maradona, he had already played in the Primera with Argentinos Juniors but Boca took a decision and it paid off. River should have done the same with Messi."

3 Finalists For FIFA's The Best Men's Player Revealed, Messi Snubbed!

Messi spent six years at Newell's Old Boys as a youth player before joining Barca in 2001.

How many years do you think Messi still has at the top? Let us know in the comments section below. 

The 10 Highest-Spending Clubs Since 2010

Surprise Boss Tipped To Replace Mourinho At Man Utd

Booysen Arrival, Hadebe Return, Tower Facing Uncertain Future?

7 comments

Top 5

Downs To Hijack Chiefs Deal?

218 Mar 29, 2021 10:53 AM in Mamelodi Sundowns

10 Richest African Footballers In The World, Past & Present

7 Mar 11, 2021 07:19 PM in African Football

PSL Players Who Have Qualified For AFCON

16 Mar 29, 2021 11:59 AM in PSL

All Eight Teams To Have Qualified For CAFCL Quarters

116 Apr 10, 2021 11:30 PM in African Football

10 SA Players Silently Making Their Mark Abroad

Mar 29, 2021 01:54 PM in Players Abroad

All Eight Teams To Have Qualified For CAFCL Quarters

116 Apr 10, 2021 11:30 PM in African Football

Khan Urges Chiefs To Sign 'Underrated' Midfielder

43 Apr 11, 2021 12:59 PM in Kaizer Chiefs

Legend Looks! 10 Of Radabe’s Coolest IG Flexes

1 Apr 12, 2021 10:37 AM in Drip, Style & Swag

Tau Opens Up On PSL Return

84 Apr 12, 2021 03:06 PM in Players Abroad

CAF QF Draw Explained, Who Will Downs & Chiefs Get?

220 Apr 11, 2021 09:35 AM in CAF Champions League

Nine Chiefs Players Not Going To AFCON

102 Mar 29, 2021 03:22 PM in Kaizer Chiefs

The Highest-Paid African Stars In The EPL

18 Feb 02, 2021 07:14 PM in English Premier League

Confirmed: Manyisa's Next Destination Revealed

47 Mar 30, 2021 04:00 PM in PSL

12 Players Who Went Bankrupt

23 Dec 07, 2020 12:34 PM in World News