Regarded as one of the best players to have represented Argentina at the international stage, Juan Roman Riquelme has certainly been missed from the international scene since his retirement in 2008.
The playmaker played with some of the best players in world football during his time in Europe with Barcelona amongst other clubs. He has spoken about the state of the national team at a very difficult time. Argentina have been without a major trophy for more than two decades, but the fans have been left extremely hurt following the last three years.
After losing in the World Cup 2014 final, the national team went on to lose in successive Copa America finals against Chile. It has been regarded as one of the greatest disappointments in Argentine sport history. Yet, even more incredible is the fact that this team was unable to win the titles even with Lionel Messi in the team.Riquelme says that Messi is clearly the best player of the world has ever seen. Read more
Argentina national team coach Edgardo Bauza says Barcelona have not come in with a request to rest Lionel Messi for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers.
The player is reportedly tired after having been involved in football action continuously for the last four years. His performance has declined during the 2015-16 season and it was a major factor in the club being unable to lift the Champions League title. The 29-year-old has been experiencing problems with his hamstring just before the start of the World Cup qualifiers for Argentina. The player ended the 1-0 win over Athletic Bilbao on Sunday with a little discomfort.
It was later learnt that his left hamstring had been giving him problems and it was advised that the problem may increase if he takes part in the World Cup qualifiers. After having just convinced him to return to the national team, managerBauza was facing a tight situation with regard to the availability of the player. He has dismissed suggestions that Barcelona have requested him to leave out Messi for the upcoming game against Uruguay and Venezuela. The game against Uruguay will be seen as the toughest from the Argentine camp’s view. The potential absence of Sergio Aguero makes it even more imperative for Argentina to have the presence of Messi on the pitch.
Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi will be coming up against Celtic when the Spanish club take on the Scottish club in the International Champions Cup this weekend.
It represents a throwback to the meeting between the teams a few years ago in the Champions League. Lionel Messi managed to perform at his brilliant best and overcome a stubborn Celtic team. Since then, a lot has changed in the world of football especially concerning with these two clubs. Barcelona have gone on from success to success while Celtic have been struggling to make a significant impact in European football in the last few years
The poor form in Europe over the last few years has led to the dismissal of Ronny Deila. It has resulted in the arrival of former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers to Celtic Park. Ahead of the meeting between the two teams, Messi has spoken about how the absence of Celtic in the Champions League will create a huge void. Celtic almost came close to being knocked out of the Champions League qualifiers but they were rescued by a late equaliser from Leigh Griffiths. It means that the Scottish club still remain with a chance of getting into the group stages since Astana of Kazakhstan will be coming to Celtic Park for the return leg.
Luis Suarez has states that his Barcelona teammate will play for Argentina again.
Lionel Messi has announced his international retirement after losing the Copa America final to Chile. He was the culprit of missing a penalty in a shootout and clearly appears to be devastated after the result. When asked after the match whether he will be representing the country again, Lionel Messi stated that this was his last appearance for his country as it is too hurtful to lose another final
Since that day, there have been many football legends that have called for Messi to reconsider his decision, but the Argentina forward has yet to make another statement.
Argentina national coach Gerardo Martino stated that Lionel Messi understands why he has been left out of the Olympic team.
He said that he had taken the decision to protect Messi from being burned out.
Indeed, Lionel Messi will have to participate in the Copa America first with the national team. Martino said that he felt that Messi will need a break after a long season in Europe and that it would have been insane to make him play in two major tournaments. For him, Argentina can manage without Messi in the Olympics but not in Copa America.
He said that things would have been different if there were no Copa America this year but with the current schedule it is preferable for Messi to avoid playing in the Olympics.
He compared the situation to Brazil where they have taken the decision to play Neymar only in the Olympics instead of the Copa America. Martino said that he will strengthen the Olympics team in defence where he felt that there is a need.
Martino believes that Argentina will have to make some compromises in both tournaments. Clubs will be unwilling for their players to participate in both competitions and it is important that he find a right balance for the teams. He believes that taking part in the Copa America will provide enough time for Messi to recover and to participate in his club’s pre-season training camp. Read more
Celtic beats Hearts 3-1 on Saturday to open a 7 point lead at the top of the Ladbrokes Premiership. The game did not start well for Celtics with the visitors opening the scoring in the 6th minute.
Indeed, Hearts managed to take the lead thanks to a Jamie Walker goal in the opening minutes of the goal. Walker collected the ball at the edge of the box and fired a shot beyond the reach of Celtic goalkeeper Craig Gordon.
Celtic regrouped amidst growing anxiety from the fans after the goal to equalize in the 15th minute of an absorbing encounter. The Heart’s goalkeeper, Neil Alexander made a superb save from a Celtic’s free-kick, but the resulting corner was not dealt with properly by the Heart defense.
Roberts took the corner and met with the head of Juanma, who directed the ball in the path of Mackay-Steven. The Celtic player did not miss the target from almost 22 yards out to draw his team level.
After the equaliser, the game became a bit more levelled with both times creating chances one after the other. The Heart’s keeper made a fine save with his leg from Griffiths while Ozturk missed the target with a free-kick. Read more
There comes a time in the career of every player that they have to start taking into consideration where they will be spending the last few seasons before deciding to retire and even though Lionel Messi is only 28 years old and still has plenty of time left, there already are talks and rumors going on of where the Argentine forward will retire and according to the president of River Plate, Rodolfo D’Onofrio stated that there is a possibility of Messi retiring in River Plate.
Lionel Messi spent around 1 week with River Plate back when he was a youngster as he had a trial with the Argentine and Rodolfo D’Onofrio said that Messi would feel right at home if he does decide to come back to the club where he spent less than 1 month performing in.
“Why couldn’t Messi one day finish his career at River? It would be like going back to what once was his home because he had a trial here before he left for Barcelona. He told me he tried out at River but the problem was that they couldn’t sign him because his contract was in the hands of Newell’s. He went back to Rosario to try, but they gave him six months and he still hadn’t played. It was then that he decided to go to Barcelona.” Rodolfo D’Onofrio.
To be completely realistic, if Messi does indeed retire in River Plate it would be a huge surprise as the Argentine attacker considers Barcelona and Newell’s Old Boys to be his true home and those clubs have played a much more important role in the career of Messi than River Plate has ever had.
It was with Newell’s Old Boys that Messi performed with and spent the majority of his youth career and spent 6 years of his career and managed to score more than 450 goals.
Barcelona on the hand is unquestionably the club that holds most importance for Lionel Messi as it was the Spanish club that offered to pay for the growth hormone treatment that the Argentine player needed and from there on out Messi’s relationship with Barcelona is extremely close as the Spanish club do everything and anything they can do make their star player happy. Read more
Argentina Football Association (AFA) President Luis Segura says that the criticism of Lionel Messi should end immediately.
The Argentine superstar has received widespread criticism for failing to lead his team to success in the Copa America 2015. Messi was a major factor in the national team reaching the final of the competition. His performances may have been similar to that during the World Cup 2014. The similarity extends even into the goal records as well. Messi managed only one goal throughout the entire tournament and this stretched his poor run with the national team.
Despite being the best player in the world, Messi will feel an extremely sad man to end his career without having won any major international honour apart from the Olympics medal. He has won every major title at club level. The Internet media and several other platforms have been quick to jump on the Messi bandwagon just as the tournament has completed. This, however, does not please President Luis Segura who says that such criticism is unacceptable. The 28-year-old superstar watched his team suffer a 4-1 defeat on penalties to Chile, who hosted the tournament. The game went into penalties after both teams were involved in a 0-0 draw. Read more