Updated 02:59 AM EST, Sat, Jan 22, 2022

Messi to Meet his Biggest Fan the Afghan Child Wearing a Plastic Bag Jersey

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In January, a photo of a child wearing a make-do plastic bag version of Lionel Messi's jersey went viral. The five-year-old child, named Murtaza Ahmdi, wore the bag with Messi's name and jersey number scrawled on the back.

According to The Daily Mail, the boy idolizes Argentina's forward, however, he and his family lived in a poor village in the province of Ghanzi, and there is no way for them to afford a real jersey. His 15-year-old brother, Homayoun, made him the plastic bag version instead, scrawling Messi's name and number with a marker pen. Homayoun said, "We can't even imagine buying the original Messi jersey. We just can't afford it. So, to make my brother happy, I made a shirt out of that plastic bag for him."

The young man seemed successful, as his brother looked happy in the photos that went viral. Speaking with CNN, Murtaza emphasized that he loves Messi. When asked about his internet fame, the five-year-old noted that "the whole people in the world know me now."

His father, Arif Ahmadi, shared, "The impact of the reports about my son has been positive and has inspired me. My biggest hope is to have a football stadium in our district. That is my biggest dream."

The footballer was aware of the photo that went viral, and his father, Jorge Messi, confirmed his son's desire to "do something" for his fan. The Afghanistan Football Federation reiterated Messi's desire as well, and said that they have been communicating with the federation to set up a meeting with the boy. However, no date nor venue has been finalized at the moment.

AFF spokesman Sayed Ali Kazemi said, "Messi has been in communication with the federation to set up a meeting with the young boy. We are working to see whether Messi will come to Afghanistan or the five-year-old will travel to Spain or they will meet in a third country."

Kazemi also told Time that the federation will do their best to ensure that Messi's young fan will have a future in football, and maybe even a spot in the Afghan team eventually. They added that they "will do everything in our capacity to train him."

For now, Murtaza and his family are waiting on news as to whether or not Messi's biggest fan may indeed be able to meet his idol. It looks like there are big chances of that happening, especially considering that calls have been made to the right people. What do you think about Messi's move to meet his young Afghan fan?

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