Lionel Messi Surprises Fans on a Google Hangout

March 19, 2014

12:30 pm

Miami-based startup SWOL (Soccer Without Limits) and Google teamed up with Ballon D’or-winning Argentine soccer superstar Lionel Messi to surprise the player’s fans. This happened during a Hangout video session last week as a surprise to a group of unsuspecting soccer journalists and Barcelona fans.

The Google Hangout panel included Sports Illustrated senior writer and New York Times bestselling author Grant Wahl, beIN Sports host Kay Murray, and London’s Daily Mirror lead football correspondent, John Cross. They were discussing the year’s competition when suddenly, the Argentinian appeared in the hangout.

“We planned secretly with Google and Messi beforehand so that our panel was completely unaware. Their reactions were pure shock, from one guest beginning to physically shake to another pulling out their cell and taking [a] picture of the screen while the whole thing was happening,” explains Adam Davis, SWOL CEO and cofounder.

Messi famously plays for Spanish club FC Barcelona and is one of the world’s most decorated soccer stars. According to various news outlets, including CNN International, Messi became Barcelona’s all-time leading scorer during a 7-0 win in the Spanish domestic league last Sunday.

“It was great to team up with the world’s best soccer player, Messi, and the world’s most successful technology company, Google, for the surprise. As one of the fastest-growing soccer destinations online, we’ll continue to innovate and introduce new ways to bring the fans closer to their favorite teams and players,” says Davis.

SWOL is an online social community aimed at uniting global soccer fans through original content and fantasy gaming. It will be launching a new mobile fantasy game in April for this summer’s World Cup in Brazil.


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Camila has been heavily active in South Florida’s tech startup community, where she is a co-host of a local radio show called pFunkcast. Camila previously worked at Greenpeace International and the Organization of the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in various communication roles. A proud Brazilian who spent most of he life in Peru, she is passionate about traveling and documentaries.

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