Barcelona forward Lionel Messi will be the inspiration for a new show from the Canadian entertainment company Cirque du Soleil.
The Argentina international took to social media to explain how his life and career will be the embodiment of the show, which is set to go on a world tour in 2019.
“It feels both crazy and incredible that Cirque du Soleil will create a show based on my life, my passion, my sport,” Messi said in a statement. “Cirque du Soleil is a family favourite of ours. I have no doubt this show will amaze people as their shows always do.”
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has spent his entire playing career at Barcelona, making 648 appearances for the club across all competitions.
Over the last 14 years since his debut, which came during a Catalan derby against Espanyol, Messi has scored 563 goals for the Blaugrana. He has also claimed 240 assists along the way.
The president and chief operating officer at Cirque du Soleil, Jonathan Tetrault, added that not only would their Messi-themed show speak to football fans, but that it would still resonate with regular audiences.
“We are thrilled to be working with such a living legend,” Tetrault said, quoted by the BBC. “We are convinced that bringing Messi’s legacy to life on stage will touch audiences and speak to all football fans.”
Previous Cirque du Soleil shows have centred around the likes of Michael Jackson and the Beatles, but this will be the first time their performance will focus on the life and work of a sporting icon.
Exact dates and venues for the show are yet to be announced.