Sports | March 21, 2020 11:02 am

Soccer Players Are Doing the “Toilet Paper Challenge” to Kill Time in Quarantine

Messi is one of many athletes to try his foot at the 10 Touch Challenge

Lionel Messi challenge
Lionel Messi during team warm up before the Barcelona V Real Sociedad La Liga regular season match on March 7th.
Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images

Athletes all around the world and across a variety of sports are finding ways to stay active during coronavirus quarantines, but one specific challenge has taken over social media over the last few days, particularly after Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi took part. The “10 Touch Challenge,” also known as the “Toilet Paper Challenge,” sees athletes try to juggle a roll of toilet paper ten times with their feet, similarly to how soccer players juggle soccer balls in training.

Here’s Messi to demonstrate, after his former teammate Xavi Hernandez challenged him on instagram:

The challenge appears to be inspired by Messi’s current Barca squad-mate Riqui Puig, who posted a video juggling toilet paper, though without the challenge aspect, earlier this week:

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Manchester United’s Bruno Fernandes showed part of why he’s been so good for the Red Devils since moving in January, showing off his close control and improvisation:

France legend Thierry Henry didn’t quite get the ten touches in, but his was perhaps the most impressive show of dexterity and dribbling skill anyway:

True to form, former Brazil international Felipe Melo, who was infamous for his hard-hitting tackles, eschewed the challenge for a variation more fitting his playstyle:

And it’s not just soccer players getting in on the action; the Los Angeles Kings posted a video of their captain, Anze Kopitar, participating in his kitchen, while his dog trots away in possible confusion:

On the other hand, Dallas Mavericks budding star Luka Doncic was…less successful in his attempt, wiping out in pursuit of a wayward roll of TP:

It’s heartening to see that athletes as famous as Messi and Henry are finding new ways to entertain themselves while practicing good social distancing, just like the rest of us. And if social media is to be believed, a plethora of their fans are also staying inside and shooting their shot at the 10 Touch Challenge with their stockpiled rolls of toilet paper.

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