Lionel Messi had no control over breaking his foot against Real Zaragoza, which sidelined him for two months and 21 days.
When he tore his thigh muscle against Celtic, which was his fourth thigh injury, he did have control over his destiny.
He had been warned by the medical staff that if he played, he would risk re-injuring his thigh again—evidently the Argentine had been playing through the pain barrier.
Carles Puyol bizarrely launched an attack on the media in the aftermath of Messi's injury:
The doctors spoke and said there was a risk of injury and you (the media) put pressure on him to play, saying that he always has to play.
You've got to leave the doctors and physios to do their job because they know more about these things than you do.
Now we're all left to regret the decision.
When Messi left the field with tears streaming down his face, he probably uttered "never again" because that is the last time he has been injured for more than a month. This shows the Argentine has been listening to the medical staff.
Here's an interesting anecdote about a then-17-year-old Messi:
Barça won, but Messi collided with an opponent, was knocked unconscious and suffered a serious cheekbone fracture. He was taken to hospital immediately.
Eight days later, Barca were to meet their city rivals again in the final of the Copa Catalunya for the Cadete age group. There should have been no chance of Messi making that game, but he begged to play.
Messi was allowed to play on the strict condition that he wore the mask and even then it was a tremendous risk. One more collision and he could suffer far greater damage.
Messi trots over to the bench, claims he can't see properly because the face mask is making him sweat too much and throws it to Garcia and his assistants. All the rules, all the warnings are also tossed aside and, before he can be substituted, Messi has scored. Then he gets another.
Pound-for-pound, Messi is one of the toughest players in world football.