Lionel Messi has already said that the 2022 Qatar World Cup will be his last chance to add a World Cup winner’s medal to his otherwise complete, glittering trophy cabinet.
It adds a certain amount of tension to the Argentine’s World Cup build-up, one that became a little tauter on Saturday with Paris-Saint-Germain’s announcement that he would be rested for its trip to Lorient due to an injury scare.
“Leo Messi will remain in treatment for an inflamed Achilles tendon as a precautionary measure,” the PSG statement read.
“He will resume collective training next week.”
The Argentinian captain and talisman has rediscovered his form this season just ahead of the World Cup – which starts on November 20 – scoring 12 goals and adding 14 assists in all competitions for PSG, after struggling upon his move to the French capital last year.
Argentina, who has not won the World Cup since 1986, will begin this tournament as one of the favorites, courtesy of its 35-game unbeaten streak but it has been plagued by injury scares.
Messi has already missed two games for PSG last month with a calf problem, while his national teammates Paulo Dybala and Angel di Maria are scrabbling for fitness and Tottenham defender Cristian Romero is expected to miss his club’s final three games before the tournament.
Messi’s Argentina will first take to the field in Qatar on November 22, when it plays Saudi Arabia, before facing Mexico and Poland in its other two group stage matches.