6 best moments of Lionel Messi’s international career
- Debut international goal Vs Croatia (2006)
After a nightmare debut where Lionel Messi was sent-off within 2 minutes of his arrival on the pitch, the prodigal Argentine made a strong comeback to the national side and bagged his debut goal on 1st March 2016 against Croatia in friendly game.
- Olympics Gold medal (2008)
Messi made it to Sergio Batista’s 23-man Beijing Olympics 2008 squad after a lot of turmoil. Barcelona had barred Messi from representing the country but only after the then manager Pep Guardiola intervened things were sorted and Messi joined the Argentine squad. Well, thanks Guardiola, Messi could win the Olympic gold medal defeating Nigeria in the final, which ultimately proved to be his only glory in Albiceleste colours.
- Receiving the captain’s armband
At the age of 24 (2011) After a dreadful four years from 2008-2011, Argentina finally looked for resurgence as Alejandro Sabella took charges of the national team from Sergio Batista. The first thing Sabella did was handing over the captain’s armband to the team’s best player Lionel Messi from veteran Javier Mascherano. Messi took over as the captain of Argentina at the tender age of 24. This was definitely one his highlighting moments of his international career.
- First international hat-trick against Switzerland (2012)
Messi might have scored numerous hat-tricks for his club FC Barcelona, but it took 7 years to get his debut international hat-trick which came against Switzerland in 2012.
- Winning the Golden Ball in the FIFA World Cup (2014)
Messi would definitely like to forget Argentina’s campaign at the 2014 FIFA World Cup where they finished second behind Germany. Germany defeated Argentina 1-0 after Mario Gotze netted a late winner for the Germans. Messi was devastated with the defeat but he was awarded with Golden Ball, best player of the tournament
- Messi became top scorer for Argentina overtaking Batistuta (2016)
The only memorable event from this year’s Copa America Centenario tournament for Lionel Messi was becoming Argentina’s all time highest goalscorer overtaking legendary Argentine forward Gabriel Batistuta.