Lionel Messi has been a loyal servant of the Argentina national team. Despite suffering numerous heartbreaks in many finals, he never gave up. He came back out of retirement for his fans and nation. He then led them to the greatest of triumphs, first the Copa America in 2o21, and then the much awaited World Cup in 2o22.
Despite achieving all these, and already near the end of his career, Messi still chooses to be loyal to his nation. And he has proved it once again in yesterday’s game against Bolivia.
Messi’s commitment shines as he chooses duty over family
Despite being left out of yesterday’s clash against Bolivia due to fitness issues, Lionel Messi still chose to travel with the team to help support them. As captain, he felt that his duty to his nation stood beyond being on the pitch.
Later, news came out that Messi was allowed to return home to Miami. Especially considering it was his son’s birthday. The son in question is Mateo Messi, the second son of Lionel Messi and with wife Antonela Rocuzzo. He turned 8 yesterday September 11, but missed having his father attend his birthday party.
After the game against Bolivia, Messi’s teammates hailed his loyalty to them and the team.
• “Having Messi with you despite not participating, is this an example of his leadership?”— All About Argentina 🛎🇦🇷 (@AlbicelesteTalk) September 13, 2023
De Paul: “He’s an absolute leader and an example of love and care for the team. He could have gone away and enjoyed his son’s birthday and yet he came here with us.”
Dibu Martínez:… pic.twitter.com/WLBoAd75Er
Midfielder Rodrigo De Paul spoke about his captain’s loyalty: “He’s an absolute leader and an example of love and care for the team. He could have gone away and enjoyed his son’s birthday and yet he came here with us.”
Goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez said, “Messi could have gone home, but he wanted to accompany us. This is something to be proud of.”
It is clear that Messi’s teammates are as loyal to him, as he is to them. It explains how this factor helped them win the World Cup. He was seen happily watching the team from the sidelines.
Lionel Messi left out of Argentina’s WCQ win over Bolivia
Yesterday was the second World Cup qualifier for Argentina against Bolivia. The match took place in the infamous La Paz stadium, which is known to be difficult for opposition players due to his high altitude.
After scoring the only goal in the game against Ecuador, Messi was seen limping off the pitch in the 89th minute, being substituted of his own accord. It was later revealed that he didn’t have any serious injury but had some fitness issues.
Manager Lionel Scaloni then decided to leave Messi out of the squad to not aggravate his situation. Since he was fatigued, playing at La Paz could have been detrimental for him. But despite his absence, Argentina managed to get a 3-0 win in the difficult match, thanks to goals from Enzo Fernandez, Nicolas Taglificao, and Nicolas Gonzalez.
Lionel Messi will now return to club duty for Inter Miami, where it remains to be seen if he can play in the match against Atlanta United on September 17.