Messi was invited to the Olympics by the Argentina U23 team

Argentina U23 team invited Messi to attend the Olympics

Argentina U23 coach Javier Mascherano wants Lionel Messi to attend the 2024 Olympics to increase his chances of winning.

“Everyone knows the friendship between me and Leo,” Mascherano said after winning tickets to the Olympics on February 12. “A player like him is always welcome.”

Wanting Messi to attend the Olympics, but Mascherano admits things are not simple. Argentina’s U23 coach is aware that Messi will have to prioritize the Copa America, which ends just over a week before the Olympics, and the Inter Miami club’s tournaments. In addition, the soon-to-be 37-year-old striker also has to deal with the risk of injury and overload while playing, things that caused him to sit out the last three months of 2023.

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“We have to be cautious,” Mascherano added. “As a coach, I have an obligation to invite Messi. However, he also has other commitments.”Thiago Almada, captain of the U23 team and teammate with Messi who won the 2022 World Cup, also wants his senior to attend the Olympics. Almada said after the 1-0 win over Brazil U23: “I hope Leo has the motivation to go to the Olympics and can participate. We have to see how he is at that time. His participation is a dream of mine.” Argentina”.

Along with Paraguay, U23 Argentina is one of two South American teams to win tickets to the Olympics. In the decisive match on February 12, Mascherano’s team won 1-0 against Brazil and took second place. Brazil only needed a draw to win tickets, but had to pay a high price for losing in the 78th minute. The team’s failure in the South American qualifiers was a big surprise, especially after winning the second gold medal. Nearest Olympics.

Olympic men’s soccer allows the addition of a number of players over 23 years old. If he participates, Messi will have a chance to win a second gold medal. However, before the Olympics start on July 24, the Argentina captain will likely have to attend the Copa America from June 20 to July 14. Because Inter Miami is still playing during the Copa America and Olympics, Messi may have to miss many of the club’s matches.

Mascherano played for many years alongside Messi at Barca, Argentina and the U23 team. Together, the two won two Champions Leagues, five La Liga and the 2008 Olympic gold medal. After retiring from his football career in 2020, the former midfielder began coaching at the Argentina U20 team and then the U23 team.

Football is one of 32 sports taking place at the 2024 Olympics in France. Messi played two years in France for PSG, winning two Ligue 1 and one French Super Cup. However, in the 2022 World Cup final, the 36-year-old striker and his teammates beat the French team in a penalty shootout to be crowned.

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