By Pete Mulroy, Aug 01, 2013 11:43 AM EDT
(PHOTO CREDIT: Pronto Magazine) 'Real pictures' of Leo Messi and Vegas woman.
Lionel Messi is considered the greatest soccer player in the world.
As a standout striker for La Liga giant Barcelona, the 26-year-old continues to rack up individual honors, most recently winning his fourth Ballon d'Or Award while also being tabbed the 2013 AP Soccer Player of the Year.
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While the Camp Nou superstar has certainly been worthy of on-the-pitch publicity, Messi is making headlines once again for something he certainly wants no part of.
Attending a recent party in Las Vegas where he served as guest of honor to host and former Brazilian star Ronaldo, Messi was photographed with a woman who clearly was not his girlfriend Antonella Roccuzzo.
Photos snapped by Argentina's Pronto magazine show Messi with his hands wrapped around the waist of the alleged stripper while staring down her shirt at the Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Resort.
With the publication noting that Messi's relationship with the mother of his 8-month-old son Thiago may be on the rocks, a source close to the magazine said that Roccuzzo is clearly upset with the printed images.
"There is nothing to suggest anything more happened but still Antonella is furious," the source said according to The Mirror. "She can't believe he has been so stupid and feels very let down by Leo. Whether she'll give him the red card or not remains to be seen but it's fair to say the sofa may be getting a lot of use at the moment."
Since learning of the photos' release, the international star has vehemently denied the authenticity of the pictures, saying they were altered by the magazine to sell more copies.
Yahoo Sports also reports that many fans of Barcelona and Leo Messi have come out in support of the player's claims, with many believing that a program such as Photoshop could have been used to make the images of Messi and the 'stripper' real.
When Argentinean magazine Pronto first published the photos this week, fans were outraged by the headlines.
There were further allegations that the snaps had been edited with Adobe Photoshop to sell more copies of the tabloid.
Also showing support for Leo Messi, 101GreatGoals.com showed how Pronto could have altered the photos to make them look as though Messi was nestling up with the blonde Vegas woman.
Multiple pictures previously snapped of Messi hanging out at the party along with past images of the 26-year-old holding his son seem to relate closely to the images used showing Leo Messi and the woman at the party.
Messi and Barcelona are set to take the field on August 2 against Santos as the superstar hopes to put these images -- real or not -- behind him.