After another failure to secure a Copa America title for Argentina, Lionel Messi has retired from his national football duties.
This comes after Messi failed to score even a single goal in the Copa America finals.
“It’s not meant for me. For me the national team is over. I’ve done all I can, it hurts not to be a champion,” The BBC quotes a dejected Messi.
He then points out that he has been on international duty for 4 Copa America finals yet their team still failed to secure the silverware.
Despite the unsuccessful Copa America run, Lionel Messi has done a mesmerizing run in the tournament. He might have missed Argentina’s first game but he thrilled fans and spectators worldwide. He produced a brilliant hat trick in his first Copa America game against Panama, after coming in for the last 30 minutes of the game. If anything, Messi retires after he has broken Batistuta’s long standing record of 54 goals against Venezuela!
At the top of his game, Messi sends almost half of Argentina’s goals for their centennial run.
But the final loss was more than Messi could bear.
“It’s been four finals, I tried. It was the thing I wanted the most, but I couldn’t get it, so I think it’s over,” Messi declared.
However, even as Messi retires, Argentina’s goalkeeper Sergio Romero remains hopeful for their team captain.
“I think he spoke while he was heated, because a beautiful opportunity escaped us. I can’t imagine a national team without Messi,” he mused.
Sky Sports further lists his accomplishments as a five-time FIFA Player of the Year, four Champions League titles and eight Spanish La Liga crowns for Barcelona.
Meanwhile, even Chile’s head coach Pizzi only has good words for the once deemed “best footballer in the world.”
“Messi’s numbers are unparalleled and I think they’ll remain that way forever, because it’s impossible for a football player to do what Messi has done,” Pizzi said to Sky Sports.
ALSO READ: Euro Cup 2016: 5 Shocking Results to Expect
Meanwhile, as Messi had the integrity to quit, some people think his rival Cristiano Ronaldo ought to keep the same thought in his mind. After a rather lackluster Euro 2016 run, he had Portugal hanging by their fingernails in the tournament.
Ronaldo has done nothing but fail match after match. Losing to debutante Iceland and Austria to name a few and missing more than 20 shot opportunities, Ronaldo must think hard whether he is still the same elite footballer he thinks he is, some argue.
Ronaldo, just like Messi, has been far more successful in club football than in international tournament. His performance in the last FIFA World Cup was not much impressive either.
Only a championship for Portugal may bring some glory to him. But for now, let us all hope Messi still changes his mind in time and keep showing his class for his country.