Argentina boss Jorge Sampaoli: 'World Cup is a revolver to Lionel Messi's head'

Sampaoli: 'World Cup is revolver to Messi's head'
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Argentina boss Jorge Sampaoli says that the World Cup is a "revolver" to Lionel Messi's head.

Argentina boss Jorge Sampaoli has described the World Cup as like being a "revolver" to Lionel Messi's head.

The 30-year-old has won every club trophy in Spain with Barcelona and has been crowned the Ballon d'Or winner five times in his career so far.

On the international stage, though, Messi has not been as successful, losing three Copa America finals, as well as a World Cup final.

In his upcoming book, which is being serialised by Viva, Sampaoli wrote: "Messi has a revolver put to his head called the World Cup and if he doesn't win it, he's shot and killed.

"As a result, he can't enjoy his talent. What I find is that the negativity surrounding international football damages Messi. At this moment, I feel that I'm coaching the best player in history. This is a guy who has stayed as the best in the world for 10 years."

Messi is expected to play against Spain in Tuesday's friendly after recovering from a minor muscular injury.

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Lionel Messi pictured in February 2018
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2Atletico MadridAtletico382310558223679
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12Real Sociedad38147176659749
13Celta Vigo381310155960-149
14AlavesAlaves38152214050-1047
15Levante381113144458-1446
16Athletic Bilbao381013154149-843
17Leganes38127193451-1743
RDeportivo La CorunaDeportivo38611213876-3829
RLas PalmasLas Palmas3857262474-5022
RMalaga3855282461-3720

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