6 March 2001.
16 years ago, on this very day, a small Argentine kid received his playing license from the Catalan federation.
That little kid from Rosario has since made 371 appearances for the Catalans, nearing a staggering 30,000 minutes of football, and has scored 335 goals in the process.
Lionel Messi is arguably the greatest player to have ever graced a football pitch.
The 29 year old has won a massive 29 team trophies alongside 10 individual awards, that include his 5 globes of supremacy.
The media has run out of superlatives, the fans have forgotten the ordinary, and football has been changed forever.
Every year, we talk about Messi and how he isn't his usual extra-terrestrial self—every year, Messi proves the world wrong.
Sometimes, it feels like Messi wakes up in the morning and says to himself, "Ooh! Here's something I would like to do with the ball!" and just does it. Whether it was his record shattering 91-goal calendar-year where he chipped everything that moved in front of the opposition goal, or his sudden ability to curl free-kicks at impossible angles that has made him one of the most deadly footballer on the planet from dead-ball situations, there is simply nothing the mesmerising forward cannot do with the ball at his feet.
For every Messi-dribble that has made it's way onto a youtube highlight reel, there are fifteen that haven't.
For every Messi-pass that is lauded across the globe, there are a dozen astounding ones that nobody blinks twice at, because it's Messi.
The little kid from Rosario has grown into a man.
He can score, he can assist—he can change the game in a moment of exquisite magic that leaves the world inspired.
There is quite simply no one like him.
The day isn't far when Messi will retire. But for better or worse, the magician will leave behind a generation of football fans, who are going to tell their grand-children stories of how they watched this one man change the way a sport was played, when they turn on their TV and tune in to a game of football.