Emotional Messi quits Argentina national team

Emotional Messi quits Argentina national team

Lionel Messi held back tears as he announced his retirement from international duty.

Emotional Messi quits Argentina national team

The announcement came after he missed in a penalty shootout as Argentina lost a fourth major final in nine years.

"It's not meant for me. For me the national team is over. I've done all I can, it hurts not to be a champion," the 29-year-old said after defeat by Chile at the Copa America.

"It's been four finals, I tried. It was the thing I wanted the most, but I couldn't get it, so I think it's over.

"I think this is best for everyone. First of all for me, and then for everyone. I think there's a lot of people who want this, who obviously are not satisfied, as we are not satisfied reaching a final and not winning it.

"It's very hard, but the decision is taken. Now I will not try more and there will be no going back," he added.

After scoring five times at the tournament, including a superb free-kick in the semi-final against hosts USA to become his country's record scorer with 55 goals, Messi hoped to end his trophyless streak with Argentina by defeating Chile.

But it was not meant to be as Chile won 4-2 on penalties.

Messi hit Argentina’s first penalty over the bar after goalkeeper Romero had denied Chile's Arturo Vidal.

Lucas Biglia also missed from 12 yards, with Chilean substitute Francisco Silva scoring the decisive spot-kick in the final in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

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