Meet The Young Soccer Player With No Feet Who’s Going To Train With Barcelona

  • Glenn Davis

We’ll admit it – sometimes it’s hard to drum up the level of amazement human interest stories try to wring out of you. “They’re doing WHAT despite WHAT difficulties?!?!” they want you to exclaim. But after you’ve seen and read enough such stories, you pretty much know how they go. Person endures hardship, battles valiantly to overcome said hardship. It doesn’t mean it’s not a great story – it just means that the market is crowded with such stories, and it’s tough to make them stand out. (Note: maybe I’m the only person who thinks this way and am a horrible person.)

The reason I say all this, though, is that even if you are the type who isn’t easily sucked in by such stories, you’ll probably be able to find some feel-good in the tale of Gabriel Muniz, an 11-year-old soccer standout who got invited to train with Barcelona next month. Like many, many other young soccer players, Muniz’s favorite player is Lionel Messi. Like very, very few other young soccer players, Muniz has no feet:

It would be enough if he were able to just move around normally, but he’s right in the middle of the action. And for my money, the best moment is at the 1:07 mark, when Muniz gets taken out by a defender going for the ball. They’re not taking it easy on him – he’s just playing like anyone else. Well, not exactly like everyone else, since he’s actually playing better than most, from the sound of it. Even if you get Grinchy about inspiring stories, that’s pretty cool.

[The Big Lead]