On Messi’s Heartbreaking losses

And the heartache continues.

Lionel Messi thought he could finally move on (after going very close in last year’s World Cup in Brazil) and give Argentina an international trophy.

Two close, two cruel. Last year, it was the World Cup in Brazil. This time, it's the Copa America in Chile. Messi's search for an international trophy for Argentina does not end...

Two close, two cruel. Last year, it was the World Cup in Brazil. This time, it’s the Copa America in Chile. Messi’s search for an international trophy for Argentina does not end… (photo taken from the net)

And the heartache continues.

Lionel Messi thought he could finally move on (after going very close in last year’s World Cup in Brazil) and give Argentina an international trophy.

But it was not meant to be.

There were no excuses this time. On paper, they were the better side compared to Chile.

Messi has Aguero, di Maria, Mascherano, Tevez, Higuain, Lavezzi, Pastore, Zabaleta, Rojo, Otamendi, etc. as his supporting cast. (Cristiano Ronaldo does not have this luxury with Portugal.)

The tournament was theirs for the taking.

Even their opponents have already paved the way for their march towards the crown.

Brazil and Neymar looked immature for the tournament. Uruguay was not the same side without Luis Suarez, as Edison Cavani seemed incapable of filling the FC Barcelona forward’s goalscoring prowess. Colombia was sorely missing the old Falcao eventhough they already have James, Cuadrado, Bacca and Jackson Martinez on the team.

But then there was the home side stopping Messi’s way. Chile might have helped that three of its star players have close connection to Messi for them to devise a way to nullify him. Alexis Sanchez was a teammate before moving to Arsenal last year. Claudio Bravo is Messi’s goalkeeper teammate in La Liga while Arturo Vidal of Juventus just recently faced Messi in the Champions League finals.

What now for Messi?

The next major tournament is already the 2018 World Cup in Moscow. By then, he is already in his early 30’s. Many would doubt if he could still conjure those mesmerizing runs that have tormented defenses time and again.

Messi is regarded by most observers as the best footballer EVER. But without a major trophy under his belt, he may not be viewed as highly compared to Pele, Maradona, Zidane, and even Ronaldo who all won for their country a World Cup. He may just be regarded as an outstanding club player who played in one of the greatest club team ever assembled in history.

The question now for Messi: How can you move on after two truly heartbreaking losses? Is it to transform into a new role to match his aging legs? Or to adapt to a supporting role and entrust the team to the younger generation?

Either way, neutrals would want Messi to succeed. No individual player deserves it more than him. It’s up to him to move on from his past losses and take his chances on the remaining big tournaments left for him.

Else, the near-misses against Germany and Chile will forever linger in his memory.

And that would be too too cruel, especially for the world’s most talented footballer of all time.

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