Lionel Messi retires from international football

Lionel Messi has retired from international duty after missing in a penalty shootout as Argentina lost a fourth major final in nine years. Messi, 29, has won eight La Liga titles and four Champions Leagues with Spanish side Barcelona. But his only major international honour is Olympic gold at the 2008 Games.

As well as losing two Copa America finals on penalties to Chile, Messi was in the Argentina side beaten 1-0 by Germany in the 2014 World Cup final. The forward, who was been awarded the Ballon d’Or five times, was also on the losing side against Brazil in the 2007 Copa America final.

Messi had scored five times at this year’s Copa America, including a superb free-kick in the semi-final win over hosts the USA. That goal made him his country’s record scorer with 55 goals, eclipsing the 54-goal mark of striker Gabriel Batistuta.

Argentine goalkeeper Sergio Romero said that he thinks Messi may have been too hasty in announcing he would quit the team.

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