Murtaza Ahmadi got the football fans all over the world emotional when he showed his love for Lionel Messi in a unique fashion in 2016. His dream of meeting the Barcelona and the Argentina star came true, but his fairytale has turned into a nightmare all of sudden.
Murtaza along with his family were forced to leave their home in southeastern Ghazni province, along with hundreds after the Taliban launched an attack in the previously safe area.
Ahmadi became an overnight sensation on the internet when photos circulated of him wearing a homemade Messi Argentina jersey fashioned out of a plastic bag two years ago.
Those viral pictures led Ahmadi to fulfil his dreams of meeting the Barcelona star. Not only that he also accompanied him onto the pitch for a friendly match in Qatar. He was also gifted an autographed jersey and soccer ball by Messi.
Ahmadi and his family had to leave all of their belongings when they flee, including the signed jersey and ball.
When asked about the items and Messi, Ahmadi said, “I want them back so I can play. I miss Messi.”
Ahmadi also expressed hope that he will meet Messi again one day: “When I meet him, I will say, ‘Salaam’ and ‘How are you?’ Then he will reply saying, ‘Thank you and be safe,’ and I will go with him to the pitch, where he will play and I will watch him.”
Ahmadi’s mother, Shafiqa, said she has been told the Taliban is specifically targeting her son due to the fame he enjoyed: “[They] said if they capture him, they will cut him into pieces.”