Lionel Messi looked a dejected figure after missing a penalty which led to Argentina’s loss of another major trophy 23 years on and his third playing for the national team.
Chile beat Argentina 4-2 on penalties to win their 2nd Copa America in a row. This is after a disappointing 0-0 deadlock after 120 minutes of football. The game saw the two teams each receiving a red card each in a physical encounter. Chile’s Marcelo Diaz was sent off on 27 minutes for a second crude challenge on Messi, and Marco Rojo 15 minutes later for harsh tackle on Vidal.
Messi, a five times World Player of the Year, had had enough of missing out on a major trophy with the national team and so decided to quit. “It’s tough, it’s not the time for analysis,” he said. “In the dressing room I thought that this is the end for me with the national team, it’s not for me. “That’s the way I feel right now, it’s a huge sadness once again and I missed the penalty that was so important. “I tried so hard to be champion with Argentina. But it didn’t happen. I couldn’t do it.”
His announcement came as a shock to his teammates, with some of them suggesting he may rethink his position as he made it in the heat of the moment.
He has played in three Copa America finals in 2007, 2015 and 2016 and the 2014 World Cup final, and was on the losing side every time. Argentina failed to score in all four matches.