Lionel Messi achieved in Qatar the dream he had been pursuing since he was little, a World Cup that he wanted "very much". The Argentina captain lived a magical night against France at the Lusail stadium and he keeps many things from that final that he will take back to his home in Barcelona next March.
"I have everything. The boots, the shirts, the cape (the bisht). It's all there on the property, Marito (utilillero de la albiceleste) and Juan Cruz kept it for me. They always keep everything for me. And now in March I'm going to take everything to Barcelona, where I have my things and my memories", explained the PSG player in an extensive interview for the newspaper Olé.
The '10' has already acclimatized to Paris, but in his house in Castelldefels, very close to the Catalan capital, he has a large space, practically a museum, where he keeps memories of his long career, especially his long career of more than 20 years at Barça. Messi ends his contract with the Parisians in June, but everything indicates that he will continue with the French champion despite rumors about a possible return to the Blaugrana club.
The one from Rosario is already involved in the competition dynamics with PSG again, although the experiences of the World Cup are still piling up in his head. "I don't know how to explain in words what I felt at that moment. When I saw the Cup there, I had not thought of that reaction. It was to see it and go because it was so close, it came from within to approach it, touch it, kiss it. And it was a huge emotion to be able to say that's it, we can grab, touch", he recalls about his spontaneous kiss to the Cup before officially receiving it from the hands of the FIFA president, Gianni Infantino.
Messi took a weight off his shoulders: "After so much time in the National Team, from previous World Cups, having been so close also in 2014, having seen her there passing so close without being able to do what I did in this last one. Behind There was a lot of sacrifice, a lot of defeat, a lot of hard times, which I had to go through. It was a beautiful situation."
Many fans, including non-Argentines, wanted the albiceleste to win the World Cup so that Messi would finally get a well-deserved reward for his unmatched career. "I think that people saw everything I fought to try to achieve that goal, I think that what I had experienced with the national team seemed unfair to many people," the ex-Barcelona player speculates about so much support from soccer fans
After beating France on penalties, the party images followed one another on the grass of the Lusail stadium and days later, already at the team headquarters in Argentina, a photograph of Messi sleeping with the Cup went viral. At dawn, we slept very little (...) I don't know why I ended up with the Cup that night, I was in my room, they had left it for me. I had it next to me, Rodrigo (De Paul) appeared, I got like that and He said: 'Come and I'll take your photo,'" La Pulga explained that iconic moment.
But all that joy and party could have been cut short at the start of the World Cup, when they felt "the shit" after the debut with a defeat against Saudi Arabia. "There the strength of the group was demonstrated, what we were as a group", he praised the team, in addition to recalling the delicate moment in the second game against Mexico, where they channeled the victory thanks to a goal from Messi in the second half.
"I remember talking to the boys (at halftime) and telling them that I knew the situation we were in was difficult, that we played like we always did (...) At times anxiety ate us up and we made us play fast" , Messi explains about the test they passed against the Mexicans. The rest is history.