Argentina forward Julian Alvarez addresses Lionel Messi's retirement plans

Sports Wednesday 29/May/2024 08:14 AM
Argentina forward Julian Alvarez addresses Lionel Messi's retirement plans

New Delhi: Argentina striker Julian Alvarez addressed the future plans of iconic forward Lionel Messi, who will turn 37 next month.

The record eight-time Ballon d'Or winner is walking close to the sunset of his illustrious career. But before he decides to hang up his boots for one last time, he will have an opportunity to lift another Copa America title with Argentina.

As of now, the 2022 World Cup winner has not addressed his retirement plans. After joining Major League Soccer (MLS) outfit Inter Miami last year, Messi has effortlessly continued to spread his magic on the field.

Alvarez addressed the potential future of the talismanic forward and the speculations about Messi being a part of Argentina's plans for the future.

"Let's hope so. He's going to decide until when, but we want him to be there, it's better," Alvarez told ESPN.

Messi has earned 180 caps for Argentina and has scored 106 goals in the international circuit. He is the third-highest goal-scorer in the international stage with only Ali Daei and Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of him in the scoring chart.

Placed in Group A, Argentina will begin their title defense against Canada on June 21. Ahead of the upcoming tournament Messi will lead Argentina in their upcoming friendly matches ahead of the tournament. Argentina is level with Uruguay for most Copa America titles at 15 each.

The defending World Cup and Copa America champions will lock horns with Ecuador on June 9 at Chicago's Soldier Field and Guatemala five days later at in Landover, Maryland before putting the Copa America title on the line.

The team managed by Lionel Scaloni includes 22 of 26 names from the 2022 FIFA World Cup winning team in Qatar, such as Messi and Angel De Maria.

Missing from the team are stars like: Paulo Dybala (AS Roma), Juan Foyth (Villarreal) and Thiago Almada (Atlanta United FC).

Teams have to submit their final Copa America squad by June 15, with 26 players per team being the maximum size, as confirmed by the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) last week.

Argentina squad for Copa America friendlies:

Goalkeepers: Emiliano Martinez (Aston Villa), Franco Armani (River Plate), Geronimo Rulli (Ajax Amsterdam)

Defenders: Gonzalo Montiel (Nottingham Forest), Nahuel Molina (Atletico Madrid), Leonardo Balerdi (Marseille), Cristian Romero (Tottenham), German Pezzella (Betis), Lucas Martinez Quarta (Fiorentina), Nicolas Otamendi (Benfica), Lisandro Martinez (Manchester United), Marcos Acuna (Sevilla), Nicolas Tagliafico (Lyon), Valentin Barco (Brighton)

Midfielders: Guido Rodriguez (Betis), Leandro Paredes (AS Roma), Alexis Mac Allister (Liverpool), Rodrigo De Paul (Atletico Madrid), Exequiel Palacios (Bayer Leverkusen), Enzo Fernandez (Chelsea), Giovani Lo Celso (Tottenham), Valentin Carboni (Monza).

Forwards: Angel Di Maria (Benfica), Lionel Messi (Inter Miami), Angel Correa (Atletico Madrid), Alejandro Garnacho (Manchester United), Nicolas Gonzalez (FC Porto), Lautaro Martinez (Inter Milan) Julian Alvarez (Manchester City).