BELO HORIZONTE, Brazil – Lionel Messi vowed to extend his international career after yet another bid to win a major title with Argentina ended in failure at the Copa America on Tuesday.
The 32-year-old Barcelona star, who infamously quit international soccer after Argentina’s loss in the 2016 Copa America Centenario final, said he has no plans to hang up his boots after a 2-0 semifinal loss to Brazil.
“If I can still help in any way, I will continue to do so. I feel really good in this group,” said the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.
“This is a good, talented generation who showed that they love the national team,” he added. “They have a future and great foundations. They just need to be given time.”
Messi will get another chance to end his tournament title drought next year when the Copa America takes place in Argentina and Colombia, with the 2022 World Cup looming on the horizon.
Meanwhile, Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni said his new-look squad has a bright future despite the loss.
“Without a doubt, today we showed that this group of players feel the jersey like no others,” he said.
“We showed an image for the future of this squad and these players and the great path they are on. To play in this stadium, in these conditions and to be superior to our opponents.