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Sunday March 03, 2024

Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, other footballers get Grand Theft Auto VI avatars

Lionel Messi, who currently resides in Miami, is represented as a quiet loner in GTA VI

By Web Desk
December 06, 2023
Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo avatars in Grand Theft Auto VI. — X/@donshelby
Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo avatars in Grand Theft Auto VI. — X/@donshelby

Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and other footballers have been given Grand Theft Auto makeovers as the video game's sixth instalment approaches and fans have been waiting for the release.

The teaser for Rockstar Games' latest version of the blockbuster video game had fans all around the world thrilled, with some reacting in quite imaginative ways. 

Don Shelby, an X user, came up with a particularly creative answer, reinventing the world's best football talents as characters from the games, which went viral. 

Messi, who currently resides in Miami, where the game is based, is represented as a quiet loner who wanders the Magic City in a bomber jacket over a basic white T-shirt. Meanwhile, Al-Nassr superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is a suave, medallion-wearing thief donning classic aviators.

Since its first release in 1997, the game has grown in popularity, with each new edition eagerly anticipated by enthusiasts. 

Rockstar Games has struggled to keep several leaks of footage and trailers from upcoming releases under control, but fandom has unleashed some creativity, with images such as Golden Boy Jude Bellingham looking as at ease on the Miami crime scene as he does on the pitch for Real Madrid.

Other footballing icons that have been converted into GTA characters include Vinicius Junior, Neymar, and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Grand Theft Auto has become the most lucrative entertainment product of all time in its 26-year lifetime. 

The previous edition, launched in 2013, earned the game's publishers more than $7.7 billion (£6.3 billion).

Although the game will not have any of the wonderfully reimagined football legends when it is published in 2025, it will include a female protagonist character for the first time. It remains to be seen if players will be allowed to see MLS's new big attraction, Messi, at Inter Miami.