Twelve years ago today, Lionel Messi scored his first-ever goal for Barcelona, beginning a tally that has now reached a staggering 500. One Houston Dynamo player was on the field that day, and he remembers the moment well.
Agus was in the starting XI for Albacete that day, which ended up a 2-0 loss as they visited Camp Nou. Initially, Agus' excitement centered around his first trip to Barcelona's fabled stadium. It was another legendary Barcelona squad, but nobody said anything about the diminutive Argentine.
"Back then, no one knew about him, no one talked about him. Back then, everyone talked about Ronaldinho, Samuel Eto’o, those were the people we thought were going to do us harm. It was after that moment that Messi took off, in that game where he scored on us," Agus said. "I remember that a month later, I went to play the U-20 World Cup and he scored twice against us with Argentina, it was then when I started thinking that the boy might be good."
It's a moment he's re-lived several times, to nobody's surprise.
"I can remember it because I have seen it many times since then. Normally, always around this time of the year the goal is talked about in Spain, so I have seen it many times since then. Also, whenever I meet up with friends they always remind me about it.
"I remember that goal, because it wasn’t just one, it was two. Messi scored two goals: the first one was offside and the second one was good. Honestly, we weren’t able to do anything because we had the best players in front of us. … At the time, it was tough because you lose the game, but now you feel privileged because you get to be part of history.”