Time is running out for Argentina to win something with Lionel Messi. In fact, time might already be up. Let’s just look at the facts. The Argentina FA is a mess, for starters. Additionally, Messi is already 31 years old. Despite how good he is, he cannot carry this country on his back. And given how talented their pool of players are, he shouldn’t have to! But here we are.
Meanwhile, fellow Argentinian Carlos Tevez wouldn’t be surprised if he decided to call it quits internationally.
“It would be understandable if Messi doesn’t return to the national team,” Tevez told TyC Sports.
In 128 caps for Argentina, he has 65 goals and 44 assists. Four years ago, they got to the World Cup Final only to lose to Germany. This summer, they got to the Round of 16 only to lose to eventual winners France. Maybe it’s time. After all, Messi didn’t even want to come back in the first place. After kind of retiring, Argentina needed him just to qualify.
“When you give and then you are criticised, it becomes very difficult. I’ve been through that and at times you don’t want to go [to the national team],” Tevez adds.
Former Barcelona forward Hristo Stoichkov doesn’t think fans treat Messi as well as they should either.
“A lot of people don’t know Messi. I know him very well and I can say that he never got involved in the construction of the national team. It’s all lies.”
He also believes Argentina cannot win without him.
“It’s very easy — if I take Messi out tomorrow, Argentina will not win a game in three years,” he adds. “That is why Argentine football has to have a structure…”
Three years may be an exaggeration, but look at the state of this team. We have no idea. It’s a damn mess. We probably won’t have a better idea until arguably the greatest ever actually does retire from the national team.
Whether that should happen is another story, though.