Everyone who has been alive for at least 10 years has surely heard the name Lionel Messi. He usually makes the news for doing something no other player has done but these days, although he still does that, it’s not been for the greater good. Lionel Andrés Messi just recently lost yet another national final after losing to Chile on penalty shootouts, having lost three international finals in three years, Messi decided to hang his boots and call it a day, at least for international football.
Just 4 days ago, the 29 year old footballer was dealt another major blow; he has been sentenced to 21 months in jail for tax fraud. The Spanish court came to this decision after months of investigation which led to Messi and his father, Jorge earning a fine of (£1.7m; $2.2m) and €1.5m respectively for defrauding Spain of €4.1m in 2007-09.
The pair also face millions of euros in fines for using tax havens in Belize and Uruguay to conceal earnings from image rights gotten from deals with Pepsi -Cola, Procter & Gamble, and Adidas which date as far back as 2005.
Although neither of them is expected to serve jail time because under the Spanish legal system, prison terms less than 2 years can be served under probation, Messi’s lawyer says his client and his father will in fact be appealing the court’s decision in an attempt to clear the air.
"The sentence is not correct and we are confident the appeal will show the defence was right," Messi's lawyers said in a statement after his client was found guilty.
Barcelona believe for some reason that their talisman is innocent and have devised an elaborate scheme to get people to show unwarranted sympathy to their star player.
All we know for now is that this plan requires people take photos of themselves in Barcelona prints and tag #WeAreAllLeoMessi
Twitter has gone off on this as majority see it as a senseless campaign to let a guilty man go free just because he's popular.
@FCBarcelona On what planet did anyone in your organization think this was a good idea?— David Villar (@davidwvillar) July 9, 2016
@FCBarcelona No, sorry, We Are Not All Tax Dodgers— The Professional (@Devil_Red_1878) July 9, 2016