Today, Catalan news site Sport reported that FC Barcelona forward and Argentine International Lionel Messi (22) trained normally with the rest of the Argentinean national team. Coach Diego Maradona admitted to Argentinean television station Canal 13 that the incident gave everyone there a scare.
“I didn’t see the play. He knocked knees with Mascherano. It scared us all. But it was a scare, that’s all. If he feels up to it, he will be on the field on Monday,” said Maradona, referring to the friendly match against Canada.
This Saturday, Messi participated in a practice match against a combination of youth players and was very active playing behind the line of attack formed by Carlos Tevez and Gonzalo Higuaín. Maradona fielded the following starting eleven: Sergio Romero; Jonás Gutiérrez, Nicolás Burdisso, Nicolás Otamendi, Gabriel Heinze; Maxi Rodríguez, Javier Mascherano, Ángel Di María; Leo Messi; Carlos Tevez and Gonzalo Higuaín.
In addition to the good news that Leo Messi is fine, Catalan news site El Mundo Deportivo presented some quotes from the Barca star, who gave an interview to USA-based television station CNN. He assured that the Argentina national team that will compete in the World Cup next month in South Africa does not depend on just him.
“I hope that this is my World Cup and that of Argentina. People have their opinions, and I respect all opinions. It’s not something that I tire of. I am the first that wants to perform well in my national team. I know that this is a very good opportunity for me, and I’m going to try to do it.
I live continuously with the pressure to do things well and to win titles. I don’t worry about the topic of pressure, because Argentina is not just Messi. In the selección, there is not a leader. Like goes on in Barcelona, we are a group. Everyone wants the same thing, and each one has his role to fulfill.”
Messi added, “Despite not arriving at the World Cup in the best way, we [the Argentinean national team] can still be a surprise.”
Lastly, Sport added an insightful paragraph to one of their articles. In it they point out that Messi is one of those football players very much involved at a social level. They quote him as saying, “Football players can do so much more for the world. For me, it’s impossible to ignore the problems that there are in my homeland. My dream is to help to change the world so that it is better.”