Buenos Aires: Lionel Messi has confirmed that the World Cup in Qatar next month will be the last of his career.
Messi made his international debut in 2005 and has gone on to make a total of 164 appearances for his country, scoring 90 goals. The 35-year-old Argentina star will play in his fifth World Cup but is still seeking his first title at the showpiece tournament.
“There’s some anxiety and nerves at the same time … it is the last one,” Messi said in an interview. It is the first time the Paris Saint-Germain striker has spoken openly about his future after the tournament, which starts on November 20.
Messi did not make it clear whether he would retire from the national team after Qatar.
Argentina won the World Cup in 1978 and 1986. The team will open the tournament on November 22 against Saudi Arabia in Group C before facing Mexico and Poland.
“I don’t know whether we are big favorites, but I believe Argentina is a candidate because of its history, which means even more now because of the way we got here,” Messi added.
“But in a World Cup anything can happen, all the matches are very difficult. It isn’t always the favorites who win it.”