Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has decided to quit playing international football for Argentina after Monday morning’s Copa America final loss to Chile.
The Argentina captain missed his kick as Argentina lost 4-2 on penalties to Chile after a 0-0 draw in Metlife Stadium and an emotional Messi told reporters after the match that his Argentina career may be over.
Messi has now lost three straight major finals in three years with Argentina: the World Cup final to Germany in extra-time in 2014, the 2015 Copa America final also on penalties to the same Chile and now this.
“It’s a very hard moment for me to think about what happened,” Messi said.
“In the locker room after the game I thought the national team is over for me, this is not for me…”
“It’s what I feel now, a great sadness has occurred again,” he added. “It fell to me to miss the penalty, it was very important.
“It is for the good of everyone, we can’t conform with reaching the final and not winning it.”
Messi had criticised the Argentine football federation ahead of the final and revealed in a press conference on Friday that he had a backlog of complaints with the AFA.
Messi, 29, has 112 Argentina caps and is their top scorer with 55 goals.