Gunmen threaten Lionel Messi and shoot up family-owned supermarket

Lionel Messi has been threatened by gunmen who opened fire at a family-owned supermarket in his hometown of Rosario in Argentina.

Messi was not present during the incident but the gunmen left a message which read: ‘Messi, we’re waiting for you.

‘[Rosario mayor Pablo] Javkin is also a drug trafficker, so he won’t take care of you.’

Two men on a motorcycle fired shots but nobody was injured during the attack on the supermarket – owned by the family of Messi’s wife – Antonella Roccuzzo.

Football superstar Messi, who led Argentina to glory at the World Cup in Qatar in December, often visits Rosario and owns a home in the suburb of Funes.

There has been a supposed surge in drug-related violence in Rosario, which is located about 190 miles northwest of capital city Buenos Aires and local police are investigating the incident.

Argentine politician Celia Arena – who serves as the justice minister for the Santa Fe province where Rosario is located – took to social media to address the attack.

Con el ataque mafioso al comercio de la familia Roccuzzo se busca, a sabiendas de que será un hecho de trascendencia mundial, infundir terror en la población y desazón en quienes estamos en la batalla contra la violencia criminal. Es, ni más ni menos, la definición de terrorismo.

She posted: ‘With the mafia attack on the Roccuzzo family’s business, knowing that it will be an event of global significance, the aim is to [install] terror in the population and unease in those of us who are in the battle against criminal violence. It is, neither more nor less, the definition of terrorism.’

Messi, who plays his club football for Paris Saint-Germain in France, is yet to comment on the incident.

Rosario mayor Pablo Javkin – who was also sent a message by the gunmen – offered his thoughts in an interview on local radio and appeared to slam federal security officials.

‘I doubt everyone, even those who are supposed to protect us,’ he said.

‘Where are the ones who need to take care of us? It’s clear that those who have the weapons and have the possibility of investigating the criminals aren’t doing it, and it’s very easy for any gang to carry out something like this.’

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