Argentina and Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has confirmed his international retirement after suffering a penalty shoot-out heartbreak in the final of the Copa America earlier today.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner broke down in tears after missing the first penalty in a shoot-out that resulted 4-2 in favour of Chile after the match ended in a goalless draw.
Lionel Messi announced his decision as soon as he left for the locker room.
“The national team is over for me. I have done all I can and it hurts not to be a champion.”
#Messi: "Es difícil, el momento es duro para cualquier análisis. En el vestuario pensé que se terminó para mí la Selección, no es para mí".
— Selección Argentina (@Argentina) June 27, 2016
Messi's quote in the mixed zone, translated by two colleagues: pic.twitter.com/VvE7fuFSuQ
— Брайан Страус (@BrianStraus) June 27, 2016
This has been Lionel Messi’s third loss in an international final in the space of three years, after losing 1-0 to Germany in the FIFA World Cup final in 2014, before two consecutive penalty shoot-out defeats to Chile in the Copa America final in 2015 and 2016.
Lionel Messi’s only international honour is the 2008 Olympic Games gold medal.