Argentina star Lionel Messi has hinted that the 2022 Qatar World Cup will be his final stage in the world’s biggest football competition. Will defend the Albiceleste, the nickname of the Argentine national team, for the last time at the World Cup, the determination to show the best proclaimed by Messi. Moreover, the player nicknamed La Pulga has not tasted lifting the World Cup trophy in his five participations since his debut in 2006.
As is known, Messi, 35, is approaching retirement. The Paris Saint-Germain player had even decided to retire from the national team before finally making a comeback.
“There is some anxiety and nervousness at the same time. Moreover, this will be the last,” Messi was quoted as saying by ESPN.
“I can’t believe I got to this point. It’s very important for me to win something with the national team, otherwise the burden will always be there, my back, all those lost finals,” he said.
Messi’s record with Argentina stands in stark contrast to his success at club level. Able to win various titles at club level, Messi often fails to bring Argentina to be the best at the World Cup.
His best achievement is bringing Argentina to the 2014 World Cup final. However, Messi’s dream of lifting the World Cup trophy foundered after Argentina lost 0-1 to Germany in the final match.
Messi has made preparations for his last World Cup. The former Barcelona player insists that his physical condition is good and ready to perform at his best.
“I feel good, physically. I had a good pre-season this year, that is the key to starting better, as I did, with a lot of mental focus and passion.”
With Messi’s great determination to lead Argentina to an end to the title drought, where the Albicelestes last won the World Cup in 1986. It is not impossible that Argentina will perform desperately in Qatar.
Moreover, Argentina is in a positive form, where they are unbeaten in the last 35 matches since 2019. The Albicelestes also brought good capital at the World Cup, where they won the 2021 Copa America final against hosts Brazil.
“I want to enjoy it (the last world cup) with the Argentinean people. My love for the Argentinian people is unconditional. I am very grateful to have experienced and enjoyed everything I have. I will fight my best in the game,” he said. (ESPN/OL-15)