Barcelona star Lionel Messi has been left out of Argentina’s latest squad, but one Argentina legend believes the 31-year-old should focus more on Barcelona instead of his international duty.
Argentina did not have the best 2018 FIFA World Cup, struggling in the build-up to the quadrennial tournament before getting eliminated in the round of 16. They struggle and did not look like a team interested in being there at times, with superstar Lionel Messi invisible for most of the tournament, with Jorge Sampaoli resigning immediately after it’s conclusion.
However, with Barcelona latest season starting off with an impressive 3-0 victory over Girona, the 31-year-old who took over the armband from Andres Iniesta has been dropped from Argentina’s latest squad ahead of the international break. Interim Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni has called up the likes of Mauro Icardi, PSG youngster Giovani Lo Celso, Santiago Ascacibar, Angel Correa and Laturo Martinez.
Despite Messi being left out of the latest squad, Argentina and Barcelona legend Diego Maradona believes that the Barcelona star should concentrate more on his club duties. In an interview, the 1986 World Cup winner went on to reveal “I’d give Messi room to breathe, a break. I’d tell him to play in Europe, not to travel anymore and not let them use him. He doesn’t need to go and play a friendly just because the team wins more often with him in it.”
Meanwhile with Argentina in a new era without a current coach/manager, the search is on for the next great thing. However, as of right now Lionel Scaloni has taken over as an Interim coach but Diego Maradona believes that the Albicelste have no chance at bagging either Diego Simone or Mauricio Pochettino.
“If I had to choose, I’d pick ‘Flaco’ Menotti. Simeone won’t come for a lorry load of cash to get involved with this and Poch is earning a fortune at Tottenham, and he’ll keep doing that. Afterwards, there’s no one else.”
Diego Maradona is right, as of right now Lionel Messi’s main priority should be Barcelona especially with the club without superstar Andres Iniesta. They need someone to guide them into a new era and with Ernesto Valverde looking to challenge for both the Champions League and the La Liga, he’ll need all the help he can get.