Lionel Messi’s newest tattoo proves the little boy’s all grown up

Lionel Messi is turning into a man right before our eyes.

Several months ago we pointed out the Argentine wizard’s new (terrible) soccer ball tattoo. It was embarrassing for everyone involved — for Messi, his family, and the child who now has to live the rest of his life in infamy because his first tattoo job happened to be on the leg of one of the greatest soccer players to ever walk the planet.

But now Leo’s figuring things out.

If you haven’t been paying attention, Lil’ Messi is tatting himself up. He’s been working on some full sleeve action, just like Thierry Henry, Jack Wilshere, David Beckham, Ezequiel Lavezzi, Clint Dempsey, Jermaine Jones, Raul Meireles, Ross Barkley, Daniel Agger, Dani Alves, Nigel De Jong, Tim Cahill, Kevin-Prince Boateng, and several hundred other soccer players.

You may not have noticed, but over the last several weeks, Lil’ Messi has been sporting long sleeves a lot. Note: It’s his right arm.

April 11, 2015 (Barcelona vs. Sevilla)

Sevilla FC v FC Barcelona - La Liga

 

April 8, 2015 (Barcelona vs. Almeria)

FC Barcelona v UD Almeria - La Liga

But let’s take a step back and really work this Messi tattoo chronology.

Lil’ Messi chilling on December 30, 2014:

Disfrutando los últimos días .😉😉

A photo posted by Leo Messi (@leomessi) on

On New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2014, Lil’ Messi’s arms were naked:

A photo posted by Leo Messi (@leomessi) on

And then, in early February:

Weeks later, more art appeared on Lil’ Messi’s arm:

https://twitter.com/fanzofbarca/status/571223719785435136

Two weeks ago, Messi was on international break and revealed some color on his forearms:

Bienvenido a instagram mancu !!! @fedemancuello11

A photo posted by Leo Messi (@leomessi) on

And today, thanks to the power of cameras and Al Gore, we’ve been treated to the big reveal:

https://twitter.com/BreatheSport/status/588378166332420096

The man responsible for Messi’s arm is tattoo artist Roberto Lopez, the man you see in the video below getting tattooed by Boca Juniors legend Martin Palermo. Yes, you read that right.

Here’s Lopez posing with Messi:

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 1.01.34 PM

And here he is with Messi’s partner-in-goals Neymar:

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 1.01.49 PM

Messi is now a man, with arms full of ink and a heart full of pride.

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