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Barca star Messi over the moon at birth of baby boy

BARCELONA star Leo Messi has become a dad.

Childhood sweetheart Antonella Roccuzzo gave birth to their son Thiago at a private clinic in the Catalan capital just after 5pm yesterday.

Leo's sister Maria confirmed the birth by tweeting "Welcome Little Thiago" in Spanish.

The footballer (25) missed training to be with his girlfriend for the birth.

Antonella is the cousin of a childhood friend of Leo's he played football with in their native Argentine city of Rosario.

Messi later went on Facebook to say: "Today I am the happiest man on earth, my son has been born. Thanks God, for this gift."


The birth of his child comes at the peak of Messi's prodigious career so far.

After breaking a number of individual scoring records over the past season, Messi is two goals shy of matching Brazil great Pele's milestone of 75 goals for club and country in a calendar year, set in 1958.

He is also a leading candidate to win what would be his fourth Ballon D'Or, a feat no other footballer has achieved.

The diminutive Argentine won't have much time to dote on the new arrival as Barcelona boss Tito Vilanova still expects him to play in tonight's La Liga game with Celta Vigo at the Nou Camp.