Argentina superstar Lionel Messi has confirmed that this year's tournament in Qatar will be the final World Cup of his career.
The 35-year-old announced the news on his future with the Argentina national team on Thursday.
"This will be my last World Cup - for sure. The decision has been made," he told Argentine journalist Sebastian Vignolo.
"I feel good physically, I had a very good pre-season this year compared to the previous. Last year I started training late, played without rhythm, then I went to the national team and when I returned I had an injury. Then Covid, I couldn't pick the rhythm."
Messi admitted that Argentina are not hot favourites but are capable of beating any team in the World Cup. "I am counting days for the World Cup, there is a little anxiety and nerves of wanting it to be already. Are Argentina top favourites? I don't think so, because there are some teams who are above us, but we will fight against anyone," he stated.
"That's why the World Cup is special, favourites don't always win. Every game is difficult," he added.
The Argentine skipper is widely regarded as one of the greatest in the history of the game and many believe he is the best of all-time.
"I never set out to be the best player in history. I think I'm just another footballer. On the pitch we are all the same and when the game starts I always try to improve myself. My intention is that when I retire, I will be remembered for being a good person," he said in the conversation.
Messi has been in magnificent form this season, both for Argentina and PSG, with Argentina currently on a 35-game unbeaten streak, only behind Italy's tally of 37. Messi has 22 goals for Argentina during this period.
The last international competition Messi won for Argentina was the Copa America last year when they defeated Brazil in the final.