Leo Messi has won almost every title at the club level and is looked upon as the best player in the world. Unfair comparisons with Maradona since a very young age has drawn a lot of criticism for the Barca ace.
Although Messi couldn’t match Maradona’s 1986 FIFA World Cup feat, he did quite well in Brazil, 2014. The Argentine is the first ever player to win four consecutive Man of the Matches in the World Cup. Though his Golden Ball victory is being questioned by many and it is being termed as a ‘marketing’ strategy. The likes of Sepp Blatter expressed their astonishment as the 4-time Ballon d’Or winner was honored ahead the likes of Muller, Rodriguez, Lahm and Robben ไฮไลท์บอลย้อนหลัง.
The 27-year-old had the opportunity of joining the Spanish National Team in 2004, but because of his Argentinian heritage he chose the 2-time world champions. He made his full debut for the international side at the age of 18 against Hungary in 2005.
In 2006, Lionel Messi became the youngest player to represent Argentina at a World Cup tournament. Argentina’s campaign was ended by the reigning world champions in the quarter-final and the tournament in Germany served as a valuable experience for Leo. Next year, Messi was elected the young player of the tournament in Copa America in 2007.
His first taste of international success at senior level came in 2008, Summer Olympics in Beijing. In the process, they defeated the Brazil side 3-0. In 2009, the Argentine skipper was given the legendary number 10 shirt, once worn by their head coach at that time, Diego Armando Maradona.
FIFA World Cup 2010 in South Africa was expected to be Argentina’s tournament. But again they were knocked out by Germany in the quarter finals and the score line was 4-0. Yet Messi was nominated in the ten player list for Golden Ball. The group identified Messi with the following words: “Outstanding in his pace and creativity for his team, dribbling, shooting, passing – spectacular and efficient”
In Brazil 2014, Lionel Messi was close to winning the gold, but we all know what happened in the final vs Germany. The next World Cup will be in Russia in 2018. By then, the number 10 of Argentina will be 31 years old, but it doesn’t matter if Lionel Messi wins the World Cup or not, he already has his name etched history as one of the greatest players ever.