Messi is not to blame for Argentina not being world champions: Maradona

first_imgDiego Maradona has come out in fierce defence of Lionel Messi, months after the Argentina star failed to guide his country to glory at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.Messi is currently away from the national team as he has chosen to not play the friendlies since the team’s Round of 16 exit from the World Cup. Argentina have played friendlies against Guatemala, which they won 3-0, and drew another 0-0 against Colombia.Argentina are set to play two more friendlies against Iraq on October 11 and Brazil on October 16 but Messi is not available to play for the team.Diego Maradona, current manager of Mexican second division club Dorados, has said that Messi should not bother coming back for Argentina and instead should think about himself.Maradona said that Messi is always blamed for all the losses incurred by Argentina and he should actually retire and let the national team handle itself.”What would I tell Messi? To not come back any more. To retire,” Maradona told Clarin Deportes.”The Under 15s lose and it is Messi’s fault, the fixture list in Argentina puts Racing against Boca and Messi is to blame.”He is always to blame. I would tell him: ‘don’t go anymore, man’. Let’s see if they can handle that – we’ll see then if they’re really big men,” Maradona further said.Throughout the World Cup, where Argentina barely scraped through into the Round of 16 and then were demolished by 19-year Kylian Mbappe in their match against France, Messi looked stressed and burdened.advertisementThe burden of expectations seemed to have weighed him down and Maradona staunchly stated that Messi is not to be blamed for the performance Argentina put up in Russia. Even in Russia, Maradona had stated that during his time he had support in the team but Messi had no one.”I would have liked to see him tell us all to f**k off. Because he is not to blame for us not being world champions.””Fine, we all placed our hopes in him, but when you go to the racetrack you hope your horse wins and he comes in eighth.Also read – Lionel Messi won’t be pressurised to return for Argentina: AFA president”In Formula One Vettel has a great engine and Hamilton beats him.”Even though Maradona supported and defended Messi, he came out hard at the national team saying it has lost the passion and was “throwing all the prestige we earned down the toilet”.”Right now the national team doesn’t do anything for me or for the people.”We have lost that. The passion. It cannot play against Nicaragua or Malta, no, brother.”We are throwing all the prestige we earned down the toilet.”Maradona had scathing reviews of the World Cup to give and even of the actions of the Argentina FA after the debacle in Russia.”The truth is that we entered as Guatemala and left as Costa Rica. It hurt me a lot. Because there is no respect. Now they put Scaloni. Scaloni is a great boy but he can not handle the traffic. How are we going to give the Argentine team to Scaloni! We are all crazy? With all the people who passed, who broke his teeth and his head … Do you put Scaloni? And Scaloni says “I’m ready.” But if I never saw you make a goal for Argentina. With all due respect, eh. As a kid, we’re going to have a barbecue. But as technical director and of the Selection, no.”Recently, Argentina’s interim coach Lionel Scaloni confirmed that the No.10 shirt that Messi wears will not be used by anybody else. Maradona was not really pleased by that decision as well.”I think he’s a jerk. Because if I go and give it to Messi, Messi would have to give it to the boy who plays at 10. They are barbaric. I make myself bad blood.”last_img

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