Messi won't be called up for friendlies, Argentina coach confirms
- Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni has taken the decision not to call up Lionel Messi for the upcoming friendlies in October
- The decision was taken after consultation with Messi himself
"I spoke with him (Messi) and we are still thinking the best thing is that he doesn't come, that he's not here," Argentina boss Scaloni told Fox Sports at the FIFA gala on Monday.
"We're on a different era and these boys have to keep putting on the national team shirt and to see what they can show, that's the most important thing."
Leo Messi has put his Argentina career on a pause as he didn't take part in September friendlies, too.
However, Argentina Football Association president Claudio Tapia assured the media that eventually Messi will return:
"I have no doubts that he will return to play [with the national team]," Claudio Tapia told TyC Sports, as per ESPN. "We have to let him be and give him the time he needs. We have to continue the way we are."
🗣️ Érik Lamela (Tottenham & Argentina's NT): "Leo Messi is the best footballer I've seen ever since I started playing football. There will truly be no player better than him." pic.twitter.com/2vCPtoEe0P— Culé Source (@CuleSource) September 22, 2018
Messi has scored 65 goals in 128 appearances since making his debut with Argentina in August 2005, taking his team to the World Cup final in 2014, as well as Copa America final in 2015 and 2016.