Lionel Messi paid tribute to Diego Maradona before kick-starting Argentina’s FIFA World Cup 2022 campaign. Diego Maradona is one of the greatest football players to ever play the game. He passed away on 25th November 2020 at the age of 60 due to a cardiac arrest.
Lionel Messi, who is often said to be the successor of Maradona’s throne in Argentine football, paid homage to his late compatriot while talking to FIFA before their opening world cup match against Saudi Arabia.
Remembering the great Diego Maradona, who sadly passed away two years ago today.
You are always in our thoughts, Diego 💙🇦🇷 pic.twitter.com/ZI5LCYhaKD
— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) November 25, 2022
Messi said that “it was going to be a strange feeling [to not have Maradona] here with us anymore”. Leo further added that he felt as if “he [Maradona] will always be there present with us”.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino unveiled a statue of Maradona in Qatar at an event organized by CONMEBOL. Infantino said, ” Diego is immortal, he is still with us. What this man has done to get people to fall in love with this sport, maybe nobody else has been able to do. ”
Hoy se cumple un año de tu partida física 😭.
Tu recuerdo imborrable quedará siempre los corazones de los argentinos 🇦🇷
¡Te extrañamos, Diego! #Eterno pic.twitter.com/U22kDEEQNc
— AFA (@afa) November 25, 2021
He also added that a day ahead of every world cup would be reserved for honoring the legacy of Maradona.
Will Lionel Messi finally get his hands on the World Cup trophy?
Lionel Messi is arguably one of the greatest football players that have ever lived. With a plethora of titles in his trophy cabinet, Messi has won every trophy in world football but one. The FIFA World Cup. That’s the trophy that Messi cherishes the most, and the one that has eluded him on many occasions in his career.
The closest that he came to winning it was in the 2014 World Cup when his side lost to Germany 1-0 in the final during extra time with super-sub Mario Gotze scoring the winner in the 113th minute.
Many have criticized the record Ballon D’or winner previously for failing to win a major trophy with his national side. However, Messi silenced his critics last year when Argentina won the 2021 Copa America tournament beating Brazil in the final. His Argentina side has been in tremendous form, despite losing to Saudi Arabia in the opening match of their 2022 World Cup campaign.
The former Barcelona talisman has previously said that this world cup, the fifth one of his career, is probably his last one. With Messi heading to the world cup in superb form, the Argentine fans will be dreaming of winning their third world cup title after a long span of 36 years.
Can Messi finally win a world cup for his country like his idol Diego Maradona did in 1986?