It was reported earlier this week that Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi had spent a massive €32 million on a 1957 Ferrari 335 S Spider Scaglietti, outbidding none other than Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo in the process.
The story sounded too good to be true - and so it proved. Messi hadn’t turned into Floyd Mayweather overnight.
To debunk the rumour, Messi took to Instagram on Thursday evening and posted an amusing photograph of himself pointing to a toy car - presumably belonging to one of his sons, Thiago or Mateo - alongside the caption: “My new car😂😂”. Scroll down this page to see the Instagram post.
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“The new car they say I bought,” Messi wrote, alongside the photo of him and the toy car.
The post is well on course for a million likes and has received in excess of 15,000 comments inside 15 hours - many containing the ‘😂’ emoji.
Messi isn't the most extravagant footballer
Messi might be one of the world’s highest-paid athletes, but he’s not exactly extravagant with his purchases.
The Argentina international splashes out for the odd flashy suit - even that’s probably given to him free of charge - when turning up to win his annual Ballon d’Or, but the rest of the time he can often be seen wearing a pair of jeans and a t-shirt.
No doubt he has a very expensive house, but we can’t be certain. While we’ve all seen inside Cristiano Ronaldo’s gaffe, Messi is a little more private.
Messi focused on winning with Barcelona & Argentina
Perhaps Messi will spend his millions on fancy cars after he retires, but for now his focus remains very much on football and his family - as it has done since he was young.
The 28-year-old has a real chance of finishing the season with more winners’ medals to add to his extensive collection - Barcelona could win another treble this term - while he will be determined to win his first major honour, aside from the gold medal that he won at the 2008 Olympic Games, with Argentina at the Copa America this summer.
Asked if he would trade all of his Ballon d’Or awards for a World Cup winners’ medal with his national team, Messi was quoted as saying by ESPN last month: "What a tough question. But the World Cup is the highest thing you can reach as a player. So the World Cup, definitely."
Messi was on the losing side in the 2014 World Cup final - won by Germany - and was also a runner-up against Chile in last summer’s Copa America final.
He will be keen to make amends in the United States this summer.
How many Ballon d’Or awards will Lionel Messi finish his career with? Let us know by leaving a comment below.
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