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November 2013

“The dark side of soccer”

The stories of Francisco, Pelé, Isaías and Gastón, four children who want to succeed in soccer, show us how the lights and shadows of the magnificent factory of stars that is Argentina.



Lionel Messi and Diego Armando Maradona are considered two of the best soccer players in Argentina, one of the most extraordinary global factories of soccer players. From the elegant Di Stefano, through the temperamental Maradona, to another genius, also small in stature and who seems to have the ball sewn to his feet, Messi, the Argentine players do not stop causing a sensation on all five continents.

In the documentary I WANT TO BE MESSI, award-winning director Hernan Zin shows how this football factory works. And he does so through a very particular narrator, the manager Leo Fleet, who leads us to discover the lives of four children trying to succeed: Francisco, Pelé, Isaías and Gastón.

Their stories of struggle, of resignation and overcoming, reveal the key to the success of the Argentine soccer factory, but also its darker face: the exploitation suffered by some children at the hands of unscrupulous agents or their own parents; the extreme competitiveness that deprives them of their childhood; the radical commodification of a sport that promises fame and wealth to all and then delivers it to just an elect handful.


Directed and Written by:
Hernán Zin
Executive Producers:
Hernán Zin, Andrés Luque, Fernando Pastini.
Hernán Zin, Sergio Carmona
Sergio Corredor
Director of Photography:
Hernán Zin
La Caña Bros
Doc Land, TVE, La Caña Bros.


2014 Festival Espiello
Best Research