What's the story?
Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter has made a revelation involving Barcelona captain Lionel Messi after he was presented with the Golden Ball back in the 2014 World Cup. Apparently, despite winning the award, Messi rued the fact that he couldn't lift the trophy that mattered most.
In case you didn't know...
Messi has won it all with Barcelona. The Argentine maestro has so far lifted ten LaLiga titles, four Champions League trophies, six Copa del Reys, eight Spanish Super Cups and three UEFA Super Cups besides several individual accolades with the club.
However, the Barcelona captain has been on the receiving end of severe criticism when it comes to his international career, despite having won an Olympic gold and an under-20 World Cup with Argentina.
Much of the criticism comes from his inability to replicate the same success he has enjoyed with Barcelona with his national team, having lost a number of Copa America finals as well as the 2014 FIFA World Cup final.
The heart of the matter
Argentina's biggest heartbreak is arguably their 2014 World Cup final defeat to Germany after Mario Gotze scored the extra-time winner to lead his side to international glory.
Messi guided his national side by example throughout the tournament, having been named Man of the Match on four occasions that summer.
The 31-year-old was voted the best player of the tournament and was presented with the Golden Ball in recognition of his exploits.
Former FIFA president Blatter, who presented Messi with the Golden Ball that night, revealed that the distraught Argentine muttered words to himself as he collected the prize
Speaking to Argentine publication La Nacion, Blatter said, "Messi was talking to himself. He said to himself over and over again: 'The best but not the champion.'"
Messi will return to action with the Argentina national team when they face Colombia in their opening Copa America clash later tonight.Published 15 Jun 2019, 12:38 IST