The 32-year-old Barcelona brilliant star, who notoriously publicized to resign international football after Argentina’s defeat in the 2016 Copa America Centenario final, said he had no plans to quit international football after a 2-0 semi-final loss to Brazil.
Messi, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner said “If I can still help in any way, I will continue to do so. I feel really good in this group”.
He added “This is a good, talented generation who showed that they love the national team”, “They have a future and great foundations, they just need to be given time”.
Messi will get another chance to win a tournament next year when the Copa America takes place in Argentina and Colombia, with the 2022 World Cup alarming further on the horizon.
In the meantime, Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni insisted his new-look squad had a shining future in spite of the defeat.
He said “Without a doubt, today we showed that this group of players feels the jersey like no-one else. We showed an image for the future of this squad and these players and the great path they are on. It doesn’t matter because they’re going to the final but if we’re aware of what we did today then there’s only positives.”
He added the conquest was “unfair” claiming that “no other team has created as many goal scoring chances against Brazil as we did.” Messi’s best chance came on 57 minutes when he volleyed against the post.
The old hand was Argentina’s “standard-bearer.” “Brazil was continuously trying to stop passes from reaching him and we kept looking for ways to get him the ball. It was thrilling to see him play. It didn’t work out today but he’ll have his rematch and the whole squad will have their rematch.” Scaloni said.
Some of Ecuadoran referee Roddy Zambrano’s made decisions on which Scaloni was not happy. “I didn’t like the referee; I don’t usually make those comments. I don’t think he was qualified for a match of this level.” He said.
He added: “If a midfielder player is on a yellow card this changes thing. The match started to lose its balance because of small decisions taken by referee.
There were a lot of small details where the match started to lose its balance because of those decisions. “