Apparently, Leo Messi will return to play for Argentina’s national football team. Fans worldwide have gotten their wish granted by some sort of magical genie who decided not to sit back and watch the world burn after Messi announced his retirement. And if it wasn’t an act of magic, it was probably on account of the thousands of #NoTeVayasLio (“Don’t Leave, Lio”) tweets and crying memes. Or maybe it was because of an event at the Obelisco that hundreds showed up to in the rain to show support for the beloved star. Or maybe it was because of this statue.
Although he hasn’t exactly put the albiceleste jersey back on yet, according to close friends, he should be soon with his return to the national team. This might not happen for the upcoming games against Uruguay and Venezuela in September, but teammates hope it will be in time for the World Cup qualifiers in November. To be fair, he’s relaxing in the Bahamas right now and that tan line wouldn’t be doing anybody any favors.
The one itsy bitsy catch to this slightly premeditated celebration is that Messi himself hasn’t declared the comeback yet. The speculation is all sourced from longtime friends and teammates of the footballer. We’ll take what we can get.
Many of these sources, including Messi’s kinesiologist and bodyguard, Marcelo D’Andrea, said that they never doubted Messi’s return and that there has never been anything concrete about retirement scares or halfhearted announcements in the past. The national team is too important to him. This time around, his retirement comment was mainly fueled by guilt and frustration over the penalty kick that he missed against Chile.
“I have no doubts that he will play in the World Cup [Russia 2018]. I have faith in him. We have to leave him in peace. I have confidence in his silence. He loves the national team. He gives everything for his country,” D’Andrea said.
Even Brazilian football legend Pelé voiced his support for Messi and urged him to reconsider his international retirement. “He got very upset but maybe wait a little bit and he’ll forget because this has happened with a lot of good players. A lot of good players have missed penalty kicks. The last 15 years, for me, he was one of the best players in the world and this is more important,” Pelé said to Sky Sports.
So for now we’re left waiting
impatiently to hear from the primary source himself if he will come back, and if so, when. In the meantime, he’s sipping on piña coladas in the Caribbean, far away from rainy Argentina and all his stage five clinger fans.