He covers a fair amount of distance on the pitch ‒ and it seems Lionel Messi is happy to go the extra mile off it, too. The Barcelona superstar has stepped in to cover the unpaid wages of the Argentina national team’s security staff, according to journalist Juan Palo Varsky. Reported by Sport, the 29-year-old forward was approached by the workers, who had not been paid for ‘several months’, prior to a match in Brazil. Varsky, speaking on the programme ‘No Somos Nadie’ on Metro 95.1, said: ‘Lionel Messi was in his room waiting for the game against Brazil in Belo Horizonte, when a knock at the door came. ‘Two or three people appeared, all from the security team who look after the Argentine team and they said “Leo, we have to talk with you. For five or six months they have not paid us. The situation is complicated, you are the captain of the team, you know us, we are asking for your help.”‘
Messi then phoned his father, Jorge, to arrange payment after the Argentina Football Association, allegedly in a lot of financial trouble, had failed to pay the staff. ‘Surely, when Messi finds out that someone told this he will be furious, but it doesn’t matter. ‘There are a lot of actions he doesn’t want people to know about but I thought it pertinent to tell this because there is no reason not to, save for his anger.’ Argentina recently played Brazil in Belo Horizonte, suffering an embarrassing 3-0 defeat against their bitter rivals.