'My hands were shaking' - Argentina World Cup star Mac Allister recalls nervy first meeting with Lionel Messi

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Alexis Mac Allister Argentina 2022
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Argentina World Cup star Alexis Mac Allister revealed how nervous he was when he met Lionel Messi for the first time, admitting his hands shook.
  • Interaction happened before friendly
  • Messi was eating dinner
  • Shy Mac Allister approached him

WHAT HAPPENED? Long before Mac Allister registered two goal involvements in four appearances at the 2022 World Cup, he was a Boca Juniors youngster nervously approaching his Argentina idol. The current Brighton man looks back fondly on his first interaction with Messi.

WHAT THEY SAID: "I was so nervous, my hands were shaking" Mac Allister told B/R Football. "I'm a really shy guy, so yeah, I was really nervous. But then you realise how humble he is. In that moment, I was playing at Boca Juniors, so we had arrived from Argentina to [play] I think it was Spain for a friendly. And we arrived, and he was having dinner.

"I went to the table and said hello with my hands shaking. I was sweating. But it was an amazing moment. He's my idol. He's the best football player in the world."

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THE BIGGER PICTURE: Mac Allister has previously revealed that Messi defended him against a nickname he didn't like, saying of an early training session together: “I remember everyone called me ‘Colo’, which is ginger in Argentina. I don’t like it much and he told the team-mates that. He said, ‘He doesn’t like to be called Colo, so don’t call him that!’.”


Alexis Mac Allister World Cup trophy Argentina 2022

Lionel Messi Argentina 2022 World Cup final

WHAT NEXT FOR MAC ALLISTER? The midfielder is back with Brighton for the second half of the Premier League season, though he could draw transfer interest in the near future.