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We'll have to disappear if World Cup goes badly, says Messi

08 December 2017

"We have to improve if we must aspire to be world champions", Messi, a five-time Ballon d'Or victor told TyC Sports.

Next year's tournament may be the last chance for the 30-year-old Messi to win a major trophy with Argentina and the FC Barcelona forward is already concerned.

"We went through a tough spell. People want results and, if they don't get results, they want new faces".

Having been drawn with Nigeria, Iceland and Croatia in Group D in next year's tournament, the five-time Ballon d'Or victor expressed worries about the threat posed by the Super Eagles to his country's chances of reaching the second round. But it's true that we have to improve if we aspire to be world champions. We are the first ones to want to win with the national team.

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They reached the final at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil but suffered defeat to Germany. "However, they also allow you to play; they leave gaps and many spaces are generated".

Messi himself has been out of the side in recent weeks after starting Barcelona's last two Champions League matches on the bench.

"I'd have to watch them again to see what we didn't get right to not win them".

Lionel Messi has defended Gonzalo Higuain, claiming the Juventus striker is one of the best in the world and deserves to be in the Argentina squad.

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The mercurial playmaker was aware of Argentina's complications and conceeded that there are better teams in the competition.

"We have crossed paths several times, but have never talked to each other". I think this period off global duty was good for him, though, as he has been able to focus on training and improving his fitness levels.

Higuain has scored nine goals and bagged three assists in 13 Serie A starts for Juventus who are in third place in the table, two points behind leaders Inter Milan.

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We'll have to disappear if World Cup goes badly, says Messi