Toe Poke Daily: Kid has beach kickabout with Lionel Messi. Best. Vacation. Ever.

Published on: 23 July 2019

New Barcelona signing Antoine Griezmann likens Lionel Messi to LeBron James, calling the two stars "the image" of their respective sports.

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Jump to: 'He'll eat me alive!' Van Dijk, Klopp meet 7-foot-6 Celtics star Fall 

Lionel Messi made every football-mad kid's dream come true for one 11-year-old when he joined him for a kickabout on the beach.

Mackenzie O'Neill, from London, was kicking his ball on the sand on a recent vacation in Antigua when he looked up and saw the five-time Ballon d'Or-winning Barcelona star with his family.

O'Neill, a budding goalkeeper as local club Faversham Strike Force, told Argentine newspaper Ole that he got to meet three generations of Messi.

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Playing football with messi and Thiago #messi #leomessi

A post shared by MC1 (@mcc111000) on Jul 18, 2019 at 2:58pm PDT

"Messi was with his family on the beach," he said. "I was on my own and began to kick my ball a few feet from where they were.

"His dad Jorge threw a ball to me and asked if I wanted to play with them and then we played football with Thiago [Lionel Messi's six-year-old son] and Messi for 45 minutes.

"Thiago is a fantastic player for his age and wasn't shy about playing. Playing with Messi was incredible.

"Messi's wife translated because she speaks English very well. Later on I ended up swimming with Messi and we went out on a little boat and spent a lot of time in the water."

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Today a dream came true. And we played football! #messi @leomessi

A post shared by MC1 (@mcc111000) on Jul 14, 2019 at 11:31am PDT

O'Neill said the language barrier prevented him from getting any tips from Messi, but "seeing how skilful he was was enough advice for me."

He added: "Playing with Leo in the water was great fun. He acted like a normal dad. I also realised that Messi really enjoyed seeing his son play with other children."

Heart-warming stuff.

'He'll eat me alive!' Van Dijk, Klopp meet 7-foot-6 Celtics star Fall

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😱 @virgilvandijk's face 😂 BOSS reactions, as the Reds meet @grantwill2 and @tackofall99 from @celtics 🏀 ⚽️ #LFC #LiverpoolFC #NBA #Celtics

A post shared by Liverpool Football Club (@liverpoolfc) on Jul 22, 2019 at 1:08pm PDT

European champions Liverpool have not had the best of times in their preseason tour of the U.S. thus far, losing 3-2 to Dortmund at Notre Dame Stadium before also falling 2-1 to Sevilla at Fenway Park.

Perhaps that latter defeat can be put down to the players still being in awe of meeting NBA giant Tacko Fall and his Boston Celtics teammate, Grant Williams, before the game.

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On a Sunday* afternoon, We support a team called Liverpool, And we sing until we drop, On the famous Fenway Park*. Thank you @liverpoolfc for having us and S/O @jaredweissnba for the amazing shots #BleedGreen #RedandWhite

A post shared by Grant Williams ✊🏽 (@grantwill2) on Jul 22, 2019 at 4:18am PDT

Footage posted by Liverpool shows their staff and players alike are visibly stunned as they are paid a visit by the pair, with Virgil van Dijk in particular left shaken, muttering in disbelief: "He'll eat me alive!" 

The 6-foot-4 centre-back summoned the courage to stand in front of the Senegal-born center, thereby getting a taste of what it's like for the average Premier League attacker to go up against him in a match.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp took the encounter more in his stride, joking that Fall has the attributes he's looking for in a new striker. Given the way transfer fees are going, buying out the 23-year-old's contract to bring him to Anfield might just be a shrewd bit of transfer business.

Source: espn.co.uk

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