Argentina and Barcelona forward Lionel Messi retired from International duty after missing in a penalty shootout as Chile won the Copa America final.
“For me the national team is over. I’ve done all I can, it hurts not to be a champion,” the 29-year-old said.
The lasting moment of the Copa America Centenario may be Lionel Messi missing in the penalty kick shootouts and then breaking down in tears.
Argentina were beaten 1-0 in the World Cup 2014 Final by Germany before two Copa America final defeats by Chile on penalties. Messi was also on the losing side against Brazil in the 2007 Copa America final.
“It’s been four finals, it’s not meant for me. I tried. It was the thing I wanted the most, but I couldn’t get it, so I think it’s over,” he said.
After Sunday’s match finished 0-0 in 120 minutes, Chile won 4-2 on penalties.
Lionel Messi missed Argentina’s first attempt in the shootout and it ballooned over the bar after Sergio Romero had denied Chile’s Arturo Vidal.
Lucas Biglia also missed from 12 yards, with Chilean substitute Francisco Silva scoring the decisive spot-kick in the final in East Rutherford.
Messi couldn’t be consoled after the match, heading to the bench in tears. It all started when he missed his penalty, and it wasn’t pretty as he sent his kick sailing over the crossbar.
Messi crying… pic.twitter.com/MahCfKKlgv
— GeniusFootball (@GeniusFootball) June 27, 2016
Messi had scored five times at the tournament, including a superb free-kick in the semi-final to become his country’s record scorer with 55 goals. For Barca he has scored 453 times in 531 games, including a La Liga record 312 goals.