Saturday, 13 August 2016

Lionel Messi Makes a U-Turn to RETURN To Argentina National Team.

Lionel Messi brought an end to his international Retirement as he announced his comeback and will link up with new coach Edgardo Bauza for upcoming World Cup qualifiers.

Messi is back. In truth, he never went away. Despite his retirement after Argentina's loss to Chile in the final of the just concluded Copa America in June, the Barcelona forward has not missed a single match - competitiive or otherwise - for his national team during his exile. Now his return has been confirmed and it is fantastic news for the Albiceleste. But things must be different this time around.

The 29-year-old called time on his international career after Argentina lost to Chile on penalties, the Barca attacker sending his spot-kick over the bar en route to a fourth final defeat with his country. Visibly distraught afterwards, he revealed that he would be retiring from his national side - from the team that he loves above all others.

"It's a difficult moment to analyse,"
Messi said. "The first thing that comes into my head is that it's over. For me the national team is over. It has been four finals. It was what I most wanted. It didn't work out. I think that's it. It's what I feel now, what I think. There is great sadness. I missed the penalty, that's it."

Messi also added: "It's for the good of everyone. For me and for everyone. Many want that."

However, he will have quickly seen that while there may have been some that wanted him to go, many more hoped he would be back as campaigns clamouring for his return started all over Argentina.

Sometimes you do not know what you have until it is gone and that appeared to be the case with Messi, much maligned by many in his homeland after never appearing for a club team in Argentina. Instead of praising a player who has dragged them to final after final, he has been berated and blamed for the nation's failure to lift a major trophy in recent years. And that was never fair.

Messi met with new Argentina coach Edgardo Bauza in Barcelona on Thursday and even though the 58-year-old told reporters that "we didn't discuss his return", it was then that the comeback was agreed. The 29-year-old would be back for the World Cup qualifiers against Uruguay and Venezuela in September.

And on Friday the official confirmation arrived.

"I see there are lots of problems in Argentine football and I do not want to create another," Messi said in a statement.  "I do not want to cause any harm, I have always tried to do the opposite and help wherever I could. We have to fix a lot of things in Argentine football, but I'd rather do that from the inside and not criticising from the outside."

And he added: "A lot of things went through my head the day of the last final and I seriously thought about quitting, but I love this country and this shirt too much. I thank all the people who want me to keep playing with Argentina, I hope we can soon deliver them some joy."