Newly appointed Argentina head-coach Edgardo Bauza has spoken about Lionel Messi’s decision to make a U-turn over retiring from international football.
After a shocking defeat in the final of the Copa America 2016 at the hands of Chile, Argentina captain Lionel Messi decided to call it a day from international football, stunning the entire footballing world.
However, his absence from the international scene was short-lived as only two months after the painful defeat, the Barcelona forward decided to revoke his decision and was named in the Argentina squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
In an interview with La Nacion (h/t Goal), newly appointed Argentina head-coach convinced the four-time Ballon d’Or winner to change his mind and rejoin the national side. He advised Messi to “block out all the idiots” before making it official that he would return to playing international football.
“I went [to speak to Messi] not to convince, I went to talk football,” Bauza told La Nacion.
“We were almost two hours talking about football and naturally it came out [from that] that he would be on the list.
“I told him that in Argentina there are 100 idiots, who speak and criticise, but I told him that people want much, and if you are still heeding 100 idiots who criticise, you would go crazy. Then came this statement, which I found very natural, and that tells you about his desire to be in the selection and win something with the national team.
“He has that pressure naturally by who he is. And he knows it. And we all know that when the ball goes through him, he can make something different happen,” Bauza concluded.
Messi has enjoyed a decorated stint with the national side and the fans will undoubtedly be overjoyed by his decision to continue playing for Argentina. The 30-year-old has a total of 113 international caps under his belt and has found the back of the net on 55 occasions.
He will next be seen wearing the White and Blue of his nation when La Albiceleste take on Uruguay on the 29th of August. He too would be itching to go back onto the field and represent his nation once again. With the next international tournament only a couple of years away, Messi will be hoping to finally win some silverware with Argentina.