It was a forgettable campaign for Messi and Argentina, who were eliminated by eventual champions France in the last 16 at Russia 2018 as Jorge Sampaoli later departed.
Carlos Tevez has told Lionel Messi not to retire from international football following Argentina’s chaotic World Cup in Russia.
‘I think Leo has to think about himself,’ Tevez told ESPN. ‘He has to think that, if there is not a project that makes him happy and in which he feels comfortable, it is very difficult to take the responsibility of leading Argentina to become champions by himself.
‘We are wasting a lot of time not having him happy and not being able to give him a hand to achieve that target. I think we are wrong in not being able to help him feel comfortable.
‘As a player and as an Argentine I tell him that we need him, that he tries to rest, that he keeps a cool head and that we need him. We need him because he is the soul of Argentina and, as long as he continues playing football, it has to be that way because he is Argentina’s biggest idol and he has to take that responsibility.
‘Now I tell him to rest, keep a cool head and try to be well, then we need him to take charge and on the pitch.’
The international future of five-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi is uncertain after the 31-year-old retired briefly following Argentina’s Copa America final loss to Chile in 2016.