Does Lionel Messi speak English?

Tom Weber
Tom Weber
  • Updated: 3 Mar 2024 11:59 GMT
  • 3 min read
Lionel Messi, Inter Miami, USA, fixed shadow
© ProShots

Lionel Messi is arguably the greatest football player to have ever graced a pitch, but is he as proficient at speaking other languages as he is at kicking a ball?

The Argentine spent most of his life in Hispanophone countries and Spanish is therefore his native tongue. But does he speak other languages? Having spent a couple of seasons at Paris Saint-Germain, the 36-year-old will have picked up some French along the way.

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But what about his English? Most footballers are required to speak at least a little bit of English due to the international nature of their job, but Messi has rarely shown off his skills in that particular language.

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He may not need to be fluent either, even though he is now playing in the USA. Miami has such a large community of Spanish speakers that it is almost a bilingual city. Indeed, Inter Miami publish their public communications in both Spanish and English, but we may yet hear Messi speak English eventually.

Lionel Messi, Robert Taylor and Josef Martinez
© ProShots - Lionel Messi, Robert Taylor and Josef Martinez

What languages does Lionel Messi speak?

Besides Spanish and a little bit of French, Messi also perhaps speaks English better than he lets on. Inter Miami teammate Julian Gressel told his Player Management podcast: 'I asked him if he speaks any English and he was like 'no, not really, your Spanish is probably better than my English.'

"There was one moment in Saudi, I forget which game it was but maybe the first game, against Al Hilal and he came over to me and spoke to me in English. It was the first time he spoke to me in English.

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"During the game he covers his mouth because there are always a billion cameras on him. He covers his mouth and says 'now, we change. You stay and Jordi [Alba] runs, Jordi goes more in behind'. I was just like 'yes, ok - sounds good!'

"The funny part was after, he goes 'English, pretty good, no?'. I was like 'yes, very very good! I understood everything!'"

Messi has only been in Miami for a few weeks, so there is still plenty of time for the legendary player to show off his language proficiency. Perhaps he may even give an interview in English at some point.

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