Barcelona's Messi supports Madrid -- for 2020 Olympics

Lionel Messi is more commonly known as a Madrid killer than a friend to the city.
David Ramos/Getty Images

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- Lionel Messi is a Madrid supporter - at least when it comes to the 2020 Olympics.

Messi is supporting the Spanish bid ahead of the vote this week by the International Olympic Committee. He modeled a shirt Tuesday that read "Madrid 2020.'' It's surely a strange feeling for the Barcelona star who has made his reputation beating the city's most famous team - Real Madrid.

Messi says he thinks it's "good for sport if Madrid is awarded the games, not only for the city but also for the top-level athletes in Spain. It is very important to host the Olympics in the country where I live.''

The IOC will vote on the host city for the 2020 Olympics on Saturday. Madrid, Tokyo and Istanbul are the candidates.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.