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Monday, 27 June 2016 13:32

Timeline of Messi's Argentina career

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Lionel Messi sensationally announced his retirement from international football after Argentina crashed to an upset defeat against Chile in the final of the Copa America. Let's take a look at some of the memorable moments of his illustrious international career.


1. Messi makes international debut


On August 17, 2005 an 18-year-old Messi made his international debut for Argentina in a friendly against Hungary. He went into as a substitute in the 63rd minute but was sent off in less than a minute for elbowing a defender who had pulled his shirt.

2. Messi scores first international goal


On March 1, 2006 he scored his first international goal, against Croatia

3. Messi wins Olympic gold


Messi guided Argentina to the gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

4. Messi - A mess in 2010 World Cup



Was part of the Argentina team coached by Diego Maradona that exited the 2010 World Cup after losing 4-0 to Germany in the quarter-finals. Messi failed to score and struggled to find his best form at the tournament in South Africa.

5. Messi - The hat-trick man


In early 2013, Messi scored his first Argentina hat-trick in a 3-1 friendly win away to Switzerland and bagged another three in the 4-3 win over Brazil in June.

6. Messi surpasses Maradona


Also in 2013, Messi scored a hat-trick against Guatemala to overtake Diego Maradona's international goals tally.

7. Messi disappoints in 2014 World Cup too


At the 2014 World Cup, Messi was unable to give his fans the fitting finale as Argentina were beaten by Germany in the final.

8. Messi scores a hat-trick in 19 minutes


Messi wowed during Argentina's run to the 2016 Copa America final, scoring a 19-minute hat-trick off the bench against Panama.

9. Heartbreaking


However, the end was heart-breaking. In the final, Messi missed a penalty in the shootout and Argentina were beaten by Chile for the second year in a row. After the loss, Messi said he was quitting international football.


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