Lionel Messi surpassed Cristiano Ronaldo's Instagram record of most likes on an athlete's photo following Argentina's triumph at the 2021 Copa America, according to Give Me Sport.
The post in question is a picture of Lionel Messi with the Copa America trophy with the caption:
“What a beautiful madness! This is unbelievable! Thank you, God! We are the champions!”
The triumph was special for Messi as it was his first international trophy with Argentina, who ended their 28-year wait for the Copa America crown.
Lionel Messi's Instagram post currently has more than 20 million likes and 515,000 comments. Cristiano Ronaldo held the previous record for a tribute post to Argentina great Diego Maradona after the legend's demise in 2020.
Cristiano Ronaldo's picture with Maradona had close to 19.9 million likes. Lionel Messi's own tribute post to his countryman has amassed close to 16.5 likes.
With more than 20 million likes, Lionel Messi's post is currently the sixth most liked picture on Instagram. Apart from the Barcelona star and Cristiano Ronaldo, no other athlete makes the top 20 list.
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi had successful summers with their international sides
Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi had successful times with Portugal and Argentina respectively. Despite Portugal's early exit from Euro 2020, Cristiano Ronaldo had a successful tournament at an individual level. The five-time Ballon d'Or winner was awarded the Golden Boot for scoring five goals at Euro 2020.
Cristiano Ronaldo is now also level with former Iranian striker Ali Daei as the leading scorer in international football. The pair are currently tied on 109 goals with Ronaldo expected to surpass Daei in the coming future.
Lionel Messi, on the other hand, lifted the Copa America with Argentina. The 33-year-old was also the stand-out player in the tournament. He was also awarded the Top Scorer award for netting 4 goals. The six-time Ballon d'Or winner was named the Best Player in the tournament award.
After their heroics on the international stage, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are both set to sign contract extensions with their respective clubs. Messi is set to be awarded a new long-term deal with Barcelona while Cristiano Ronaldo will be offered a one-year extension by Juventus.
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