The Messi phenomenon: The names Lionel and Lionela see 700 percent rise in Argentina

Argentina’s World Cup triumph in Qatar has been a phenomenon for the country. However, the real furore over the World Cup has been reflected in another fact.

According to the Civil Registry of the province of Santa Fe, one in 70 babies born in December 2022 were registered with the names Lionel or Lionela, after Albiceleste captain Lionel Messi.

That equates to a 700 per cent increase in the choice of these names for newborns, with only six children per month having that name up to September.

That number grew to 49 in just 30 days. In addition, the Director of the Civil Registry of Santa Fe, Mariano Galvez, told the radio programme Santa Fe LT9 that “in the last weeks there were babies registered with other names of the members of the national team, such as Julian or Emiliano” but, he added, “the most requested name is Lionel”.