Over the summer, the 16-year-old Messi changed his name in honor of his idol. Children can legally change their name without parental consent once they reach the age of 16 Under Norwegian law. The younger Messi told Norwegian newspaper VG, “I’ve had a plan for a while to change my name, so I have Lionel Messi as my biggest idol. With my dedication to football, it was nothing more than to try.”
The attacker, who was earlier known as Born Daniel Are Knutsen, says he models his game after his namesake. People call him Lionel or Leo regularly and now he prides himself on ball handling and speed, and the name change is no joke. The younger Messi hopes to make it up to Junkeren’s first team, but that’s a ways away.
According to Goal.com, the current Junkeren team was promoted from the fourth division after winning the league title in 2010. Adding a Lionel Messi is quite the gimmick for the team based in the northern municipality of Bodø. And it may not be long before they add another famous name.
Junkeren general manager Runar Bo Eriksen said, “I joked earlier that we have to look for Cristiano Ronaldo. We know that there is a Ronaldo in the transition market who has previously played at Fauske/Sprint, so we know he is out there.” On the other hand, the original Lionel Messi is close to making his debut with Barcelona after missing the club’s opening match with a calf injury.