Lionel Messi Decides Not to Retire From International Football

Lionel Messi has decided to reverse his decision to retire from international football, revealing that he will return to the Argentina squad after previously deciding to hang up his boots for his country’s team.

The 29-year-old striker announced he would no longer play for the Argentinean side after being defeated by Chile in the Copa America final, though he has now decided that he will return to the squad and help them improve.

After Messi missed in Argentina’s penalty shootout against Chile, it was feared that the national side’s players would revolt, with Sergio Aguero saying: “This is the worst locker room I’ve ever been in, worse than the final in the World Cup in Brazil and the other Copa America. We are all s****y, we are trying to think about other things and continue on forward, but it’s hard. Once again luck has gone against us.

“Unfortunately, the most broken one is Messi for his missed penalty. It is the worst I have ever seen him in the dressing rooms after a game.”

Messi later said thought he thought the national team was “finished” for him, though has now backtracked on these comments, revealing that he will continue to play for Argentina and improve the squad. 

“A lot of things went through my mind on the night of the final and I gave serious thought to quitting, but my love for my country and this shirt is too great,” Messi said. “We need to fix many things in Argentinian football, but I prefer to do this from inside and not criticise from outside.”

Messi is Argentina’s all-time highest-scoring player, so if anybody can help fix Argentina from the inside, it is him. However, with the squad having lost in four major finals over the course of the past nine years, there is certainly a lot of work for them to do to finally be able to grab the gold.

Image Credit: Mike Stobe / Getty Images