Lionel Messi confirms whether he will be defending Argentina’s World Cup crown in 2026 after Qatar’s glory
Messi stated after Argentina’s victory over France that he has no plans to retire from international football, and Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni expressed hope that he will play in the United States, Canada, and Mexico in four years.
“We need to save him a spot,” said Scaloni. “If he wants to keep playing, he’ll be with us.”
Messi will be 39 years old in 2026, and he has declared that Sunday’s World Cup final against France will be his last.
When asked if he believed this was his final World Cup encounter, the 35-year-old responded: “As I’ve said before, it is.
“They (the fans in Argentina) should wait for us. We’re coming home to celebrate with them.
“We’ve done it. We couldn’t have asked for more. I thank God for everything he gave me, for this outcome, for this trophy that I dreamt of, my team-mates and Argentina too. What can I say…we are world champions.”
Messi emulates Diego Maradona by guiding Argentina to their first World Cup triumph since 1986.
“I’m not going to analyse the match now, there’s no need,” he continued. “We were destined to be world champions and we are.
“The game developed as it did, but this is not the time for analysis, but for celebration.”