“He never made a World Cup like Maradona in 1986”

France defender Marcel Desailly, winner of the FIFA World Cup, believes Lionel Messi’s Argentina may not have what it takes to win the 2022 edition of the flagship event.

La Albiceleste are the reigning Copa America champions heading to Qatar for the World Cup after 33 games unbeaten. Many are counting Lionel Scaloni’s team among the favorites for the title, along with Brazil and France.

Some also believe that this year’s tournament will be the last chance for Lionel Messi to win the famous trophy. The Argentina captain is already 35 years old and it is doubtful if he will compete at the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

While Messi’s recent form suggests he could do it La Albiceleste Desailly didn’t sound entirely convinced of that the whole way. That’s what the 1998 world champion said in an interview L’Equipe (as quoted by PSGTalk):

“Messi remains an exceptional player but he has never managed a World Cup like Maradona did in 1986. He can withstand the elements if the opponent gives him space because he’s a ‘killer’.”

Desailly added:

“But at a World Cup there are no coincidences. You need consistency in performance and I don’t think one individual can hold a team anymore and make the difference in a whole tournament.”

He continued by explaining that Lionel Messi’s supporting cast may not be able to face the situation in Qatar:

“It was complicated, but since my generation it hasn’t been possible. And I don’t think the players around Messi can raise their level. In such a context there is decompression. If you have players that aren’t top flight, they lose their skills as the games go on.”

The Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) forward came particularly close to winning the FIFA World Cup in 2014. Argentina, however, lost to Germany in extra time after a fairytale entry into the finals.

Lionel Messi and Argentina will play in their last two games before the FIFA World Cup this month

After an exciting start to the 2022/23 club season, several players have visited their national team camps for their final few games before the FIFA World Cup.

Lionel Messi and Argentina will play in two friendlies during the current international break. They meet Honduras in Florida on September 23 before meeting Jamaica in New Jersey on September 27.

Messi will feature in those two games after scoring five goals and assisting twice in his last two games for the national team. The Argentine has also registered six goals and eight assists in 11 games in all competitions for PSG this season.

Argentina are keen to continue their current unbeaten streak and build some momentum ahead of the World Cup. La Albiceleste were drawn in Group C alongside Mexico, Poland and Saudi Arabia.

https://www.sportskeeda.com/football/news-he-never-made-world-cup-like-maradona-1986-desailly-comments-lionel-messi-s-argentina-s-chances-2022-fifa-world-cup-qatar?utm_source=feed&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=sportskeeda “He never made a World Cup like Maradona in 1986”


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