No, Lionel Messi wasn't just hanging out in the city of Hamadan, Iran over the weekend. It was a guy who looked just like him -- and for a lot of fans, it was tough to tell the difference.
Reza Parastesh, a 25-year-old who looks a lot like Messi, has embraced his doppelganger looks by growing out his beard and rocking a No. 10 Barcelona shirt. According to AFP, police took the student to the police station and impounded his car to clear up commotion he caused.
"Now people really see me as the Iranian Messi and want me to mimic everything he does," Parastesh told AFP. When I show up somewhere, people are really shocked. I'm really happy that seeing me makes them happy and this happiness gives me a lot of energy."
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It all started with Parastesh's father, noticing the resemblance, convinced his son to try on a Barcelona shirt to see how it looked. Parastesh seemed to think he was onto something and started growing out his beard, too.
It looks like it could turn lucrative for the lookalike -- he has gotten media interviews and contract offers to model. The problem for Parastesh right now is that he can't do any tricks with a soccer ball, but he's working on that. If Messi is up for it, however, Parastesh is willing to help him out off the pitch.
"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.
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