UFC Legend Acknowledges Lionel Messi’s Admirable Loyalty 9 Months After Controversial ‘Bum’ Comment


UFC Legend Acknowledges Lionel Messi’s Admirable Loyalty 9 Months After Controversial ‘Bum’ Comment

Lionel Messi, the revered Argentinian soccer star, continues to be celebrated as one of the sport’s all-time greats, boasting a World Cup victory and an impressive seven Ballon d’Or awards. Nevertheless, a fraction of critics persist in downplaying his achievements.

Nine months ago, during the FIFA World Cup, a former UFC title contender, known for his candid remarks, joined the detractors, publicly labeling Lionel Messi a ‘bum’ on Twitter. However, in a recent interview with renowned MMA journalist Ariel Helwani, the UFC legend appears to have had a change of heart regarding the Inter Miami sensation.

Chael Sonnen is a legend in the MMA business
Chael Sonnen reacts after winning the fight with a tap out by guillotine choke against Mauricio Rua in their light heavyweight bout at TD Garden on August 17, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Chael Sonnen, often referred to as ‘The American Gangster,’ is no stranger to controversy, regularly expressing his unfiltered opinions. Yet, when discussing Lionel Messi, his sentiments took a different turn. During a conversation on the MMA Hour, Sonnen, while discussing Helwani’s character, stumbled upon Messi’s unwavering commitment to his wife, Antonella Roccuzzo.

Sonnen commended Messi’s loyalty, revealing it as the reason he now admires the former Barcelona FC star. He remarked, “I do like this Messi character, though. There’s [this] thing that came out on [Lionel] Messi said that he met his wife when he was like 7 years old and he’s never touched another girl, won’t even do pictures with them. I like that guy. I didn’t realize all that. That’s a pretty cool story.”

This statement follows Sonnen’s controversial Tweet from December 2022, where he criticized soccer legends Wayne Rooney and Lionel Messi. However, such outspokenness is characteristic of the MMA community’s ‘Bad Guy,’ who never shies away from challenging and critiquing athletes.

Khamzat Chimaev vs. Paulo Costa Threatens Dricus Du Plessis’ Championship Dreams, Warns Chael Sonnen

In a bombshell revelation, former UFC title contender Chael Sonnen has sounded the alarm, suggesting that the upcoming clash between Khamzat Chimaev and Paulo Costa may shatter Dricus Du Plessis’ hopes of securing a shot at the coveted middleweight championship. Drawing from his extensive experience in the Octagon, Sonnen offered a compelling analysis during his recent appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani.

Sonnen asserted, “Khamzat Chimaev versus Paulo Costa has now emerged as the definitive No.1 contender’s showdown, a role it didn’t initially hold. The plan was for Chimaev to earn that status, contingent on his victory, with a surprise twist in case Paulo Costa triumphed. However, with a new champion in Sean Strickland at the helm, a Strickland vs. Costa matchup makes perfect sense. Moreover, Strickland vs. Chimaev, especially given their shared training history, is an equally enticing prospect.”

The MMA veteran, who has contended for UFC titles in both middleweight and light heavyweight divisions, continued, “This battle will unquestionably determine the top contender, relegating Du Plessis to the shadows once more. If Du Plessis truly desires a strategic maneuver, he should call out Adesanya. While a showdown with Adesanya is improbable, it would send a powerful message that this rivalry runs deep.”

Du Plessis had seemingly secured a middleweight title shot after a stunning second-round TKO victory over Robert Whittaker at UFC 290. However, by declining a bout against Adesanya at UFC 293, his path to championship glory has become increasingly uncertain. The MMA world now awaits with bated breath as Chimaev and Costa gear up for an electrifying clash that could reshape the middleweight landscape.

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