Tuesday. 29.11.2022
QATAR 2022

Messi hints at Argentina retirement: 'I will reassess many things'

"Let’s hope these go the best way possible. But for sure after the World Cup many things will change," said the PSG's star

25 March 2022, Argentina, Buenos Aires: Argentina's Lionel Messi (L) in action during the 2022 South America FIFA World Cup qualifiers soccer match between Argentina and Venezuela at Bombonera Stadium. Photo: Gustavo Ortiz/dpa.
Argentina's Lionel Messi (L) in action during the match between Argentina and Venezuela at Bombonera Stadium. Photo: Gustavo Ortiz/dpa.

Lionel Messi will reassess his playing future with the national team after the World Cup in Qatar later this year, with retirement not ruled out.

Messi was among the scorers on Friday as already-qualified Argentina eased past Venezuela in World Cup qualifying at La Bombonera stadium in Buenos Aires.

The 34-year-old guided Argentina to a breakthrough Copa America triumph last year, the nation's first since 1993. Argentina have not won the World Cup since Diego Maradona led them to glory in 1986, with Messi getting closest in 2014 when they reached the final in Brazil.

Messi, who joined Paris Saint-Germain from Barcelona last August, admitted that his international playing future beyond Qatar was on his mind.

"I don’t know what I will do after the World Cup. I am thinking about what is coming," Messi told reporters after the Venezuela win. "After Qatar I will have to reassess many things."

He added: "I don’t know [about playing on], the truth is I don’t know. I think about what's coming next, only think about facing Ecuador [on Tuesday]. The preparation matches in June and September.

'Many things will change' after Qatar

"Let’s hope these go the best way possible. But for sure after the World Cup many things will change."

Messi added that lifting his first major trophy with Argentina last year at the Copa would not have a bearing on his decision.

"It has been a while that I am happy here, since before winning the Copa," he said. "I am thankful for all this they make me feel every time I come to Argentina."

The PSG star's goal against Venezuela extended Argentina's impressive record of never losing in the past 12 years when Messi has scored.

Messi has represented Argentina 159 times, having debuted in 2005, scoring 81 goals.

Messi hints at Argentina retirement: 'I will reassess many things'
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