Barcelona star forward Lionel Messi has revealed that former Barcelona team-mate Ronaldinho had promised to hand down his No 10 jersey to him months before the Brazilian's departure from the club in 2008.
"He had it in his mind that he was leaving and he told me to have his number. I took it without looking at what he had done with the shirt. If I did, I would not have taken it," Messi was quoted as saying by goal.com.
Ronaldinho, who inherited the iconic number from Argentine midfielder Juan Roman Riquelme, made 200 appearances for Barcelona before joining Milan.
Lavishing praise on Ronaldinho for his welcoming nature, Messi said that his former teammate welcomed him in a spectacular way when he broke into the first-team squad.
"To go into that dressing room was not easy but he made it all so much easier. I was very comfortable by not only Ronnie's welcoming but everyone," the Argentine talisman added.
The No 10 jersey turned out to be lucky for Messi as he has won 21 trophies in addition to four Ballon d'Or awards over the course of his Barcelona career.