Lionel Messi’s Value to Argentina Shown by Spain Loss

Lionel Messi’s Value to Argentina Shown by Spain Loss, according to Diego Costa.

Diego Costa believes people in Argentina should be thankful to have Lionel Messi in their national team and not criticise him when times get tough.

Messi missed Argentina’s 6-1 friendly loss to Spain in Madrid on Tuesday with a muscular problem and cut a worrying figure as he watched from the Wanda Metropolitano stands.

Costa, who put Spain on their way to victory by scoring the opener against Argentina, believes Tuesday’s result further underlined Messi’s importance to his country.

“You can see that when Messi is not around it’s something else,” Costa told reporters after the game. “To have Messi on the pitch changes many things. You can see that when he is not on the pitch, they are missing their leader.”

Messi’s hat trick at Ecuador in the Albiceleste‘s 3-1 win in their final qualifier on Oct. 10 earned his country a spot in this summer’s World Cup.

Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli was eager to have Messi on the pitch against Spain, but Messi, who sat out Argentina’s 2-0 win over Italy on Friday, was ruled out as a precautionary measure.

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