Iranian student Reza Paratesh has everyone going crazy in Iran over his looks because he looks like football legend Lionel Messi’s doppelganger. Due to the way he looks and dresses, people usually mistake him for Messi and this landed him in jail over the weekend.
According to the details of the incident provided, Paratesh was out and about in the western city of Hamedan, Iran, when a crowd gathered around him wanted to take pictures thinking he is Messi. The situation got so bad that police had to take him to jail and impound his car in order to clear the chaos and the traffic.
Paratesh’s stark resemblance to Messy also landed his picture on Eurosport UK’s Twitter account, because the channel mistakenly put his picture instead of the real Messi, when talking about him.
According to Paratesh’s own account, his father, who is an ardent football fan, pressured the 25-year-old into posing in a number 10 Barcelona jersey and then send the picture to a sports website.
“I sent them one night and by the morning they had called me and said I should come in quickly for an interview,” he said.
Even though Paratesh was very skeptical about the whole thing initially, he has really eased into his new role and now even enjoys all the attention he is getting. He is now fully booked with media interviews and has even landed a modeling contract.
“Now people really see me as the Iranian Messi and want me to mimic everything he does. When I show up somewhere, people are really shocked,” he said.
Paratesh himself enjoys playing football but the young Iranian says he really hopes to meet his idol in Barcelona and maybe even land a job as his understudy one day.
“Being the best player in footballing history, he definitely has more work than he can handle. I could be his representative when he is too busy,” he said.