Lionel Messi, widely considered the best football player in the world, says he feels like quitting the national team: “It’s tough, in the dressing room I thought ‘that’s it, this is the end for me with the national team, after four lost finals it’s not for me’. It’s sad, I wanted it, it was wat I wanted the most, but I think it’s done. It was important that I scored my penalty to make the difference, but instead it was my turn to fail.”
I think it’s best for everyone, for me and for the many people who want to win, who are not happy with just getting to the finals but not winning them. Yes, I think the decision is taken.”
“I’ve already tried a lot, it didn’t work out, and I leave without making it to win a trophy.”
The Argentine superstar is clearly suffering from losing three major finals three years in a row: World Cup 2014 to Germany, and then Copa America to Chile in consecutive years, 2015 and 2016.
Leaving at only 29 years of age, the most likely conclusion is that Messi is not quitting Argentina for sporting reasons but because he is absolutely fed up with the critics back home in Argentina who criticise him for not delivering trophies, accusing him of not making putting in the same effort when wearing the Albiceleste shirt as he does for when wearing the shirt of Barcelona, where he has won bucketloads of titles and trophies.
Sergio Aguero said “I’ve never seen Messi as depressed after any loss as I saw him today in the dressing room”. Goalkeeper Claudio Romero and coach Gerardo Martino say they hope these are just words in the heat of the moment – stay tuned!
Here’s the original interview (in spanish):