Leo Messi’s sad ending with Argentina

El delantero argentino Lionel Messi reacciona tras perder frente a Alemania en la final de la Copa del Mundo en Río de Janeiro

It had to be a happy ending of the Copa America Centenario for Leo Messi and Argentina in which he would finally win a trophy with his national team,but it wasn’t.The final with Chile which Argentina again lost of penalty shootouts turned out to be one of the saddest moments in Leo Messi’s career.After the loss in the final in a statement which shocked the football world,Messi announced that he is retiring from international football just days after he celebrated his 29th birthday.But what is the reason behind Messi’s retirement from the Argenitian national team?Messi made a debut for Argentina 11 years ago at the age of 18th in a friendly match against Hungary where just in a less than a minute was sent-off from the match,in the years that followed Messi won twice the U-20 FIFA World Cup with Argentina as well an Olympic gold medal in Beijing and that was it when it came to silverware with the national team.He participated in three World Cups and still he didn’t brought that trophy which Argentina  is trying to win since their last triumph in the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico.Messi’s performances in the World Cup haven’t been good despite featuring in three World Cup with the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany as his first,with a World Cup in South Africa which was forgettable for Argentina since their 4-0 defeat in the quarterfinals against Germany,in the recent World Cup in Brazil two years ago Argentina with Messi came as one of the favorites to win the prize and to play in the dream final against Brazil.Messi was there in the first group match against Bosnia-Herzegovina Messi delivered by assisting for the first goal and scoring the second in their 2-1 victory agains the newcomers from former Yugoslavia,against Iran he scored the crucial winning goal in the last minute of the match which he made a highlight reel for the day.Everyone was thinking that this was the real Messi which they were expecting and that his moment on football’s biggest stage has finally come.And besides scoring two goals against Nigeria in the last group game which saw Argentina progressing to the 2nd round the more the Seleccion went into the tournament the less Leo Messi became visible on the pitch.Argentina did made the final of the tournament for the first time since the 1990 FIFA World Cup in Italy to the horror of Brazil which was humiliated 7-1 against Germany in the semifinal in front on their own home crowd.But in the final which had to be his biggest moment in his career Messi wasn’t there and Germany won its fourth title in the rematch of the 1990 FIFA World Cup with a single goal scored by Mario Gotze.Messi just threw his biggest shot to win the World Cup and to place himself with the names of Pele,Maradona and Zidane in the immortality of the legends of the World Cup,but of football itself and to get out of Maradona’s shadow which was over him since the start of his career.Also there is the Copa America,Messi was featured four times in the Copa America tournament and still he didn’t won that besides featuring in three finals (2007,2015,2016).In 2007 in Venezuela,Brazil easily defeated Argentina 3-0 besides that Messi was named the best young player of the tournament,in 2011 when Argentina hosted the Copa America that had to be Messi’s tournament in front of the home crowd and on their own soil to win the Copa America,but he didn’t scored a goal and Argentina crashed out of the tournament in the quarterfinals against Uruguay which won the tournament in the final against Paraguay.Four years later in Chile,Argentina made the final against the hosts but just like this year it were the penalty shootouts which denied Messi and Argentina a silverware.In the 2015 Copa America,Messi scored just only a goal,but in this year’s centenary edition in the USA Messi gave his best performances with Argentina in the Copa America like he never had,scoring 5 goals just only one short of Eduardo Vargas from Chile and his performance against Panama where he scored a hattrick had the opinion that finally Messi would win a trophy with Argentina and bring that Copa America drought which is Argentina suffering for the last 23 years to an end,but it didn’t,it ended in tears for Messi and his teammates which now lost a third final in a row and Argentina lost a seventh final in total since their last triumph at the 1993 Copa America where Argentina won its last silverware to date.For every single trophy which he won with FC Barcelona during his rich career and records he broke,Messi would exchange for a World Cup triumph,but what he has won with FC Barcelona where he eclipsed Maradona in the terms of club football he couldn’t do it with his home country at the international level.And there are reasons,for the last three years Messi hadn’t had a break from football and was perfoming for eleven months in the last three years with Barcelona criss-crossing Spain and Europe,there were flights back to South America and playing for the national team in the qualifiers,friendly matches and tournaments,also there is the question of the Argentinian Football Association which is in a state of chaos with infighting and serious financial problems which are threatening the AFA,also FIFA had to take over the AFA and install a temporary chairman unil a long-term solution is founded,the squad in the national team which is Messi surrounded by besides having one of the best generations in decades with Higuain,Aguero,Di Maria,Lavezzi and Lamela which in the last three finals in a row can’t seal the deal and comes back home empty handed.There are calls that Martino should be repleaced with Diego Simeone who is currently on the bench of Atletico Madrid to be on the bench of the Argentinian national team but that will have to wait since it would have to be seen how the situation AFA would be played out.But after the defeats in Caracas,Rio De Janiero,Santiago and now New Jersey,Leo Messi had enough and decided to walk away and this is one of the most saddest moments of football in 2016.Maybe this isn’t forever,maybe Messi will return stronger than ever and win the World Cup and Copa America,that he will lift the trophy in Moscow and Rio De Janeiro.But one thing is for sure international football after Messi quiting the Argentinian national team will never be the same again.


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