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Lionel Messi retirement: Remembering his 10 best international goals

Lionel Messi shocked the world by announcing his retirement from international football after the loss to Chile in the Copa America 2016.

Lionel Messi has indicated that he is retiring from International Football after the loss to Chile in the 2016 Copa America final. Though many are of the opinion that three final defeats in as many years is a stain in his Argentina career, he may still very well go down as the greatest player for the national team after Diego Armando Maradona. Not to forget his U-20 WC win with the national side and his gold medal at the Olympics. 

Messi does have a history of scoring great goals and ten of his best strikers for Argentina have been listed for every football fan. From incredible long-range strikes to brilliant one-twos, Messi’s catalogue of goals is a marvel to view.  

Lionel Messi with 2005 U 20 World Cup

At this twilight stage of his national career, it is worthwhile remembering the sparkle of his early years as he burst onto the scene in 2005 -  Champion, Golden Ball and Golden Boot. Scored 6 and assisted 2 out of 12 goals. As  the nation watched,  the then LM18  flicked the ball over his head from his right foot to his left foot, past the Spanish defenders and goalkeeper, leading Argentina into the semifinals and on to win the cup.

Also read: Javier Mascherano follows Lionel Messi and retires from international football 

Also, who can forget the sublime goal against Mexico in 2015. As Sergio Aguero lofted a 25-yard pass over defender Oswaldo Alanis, LM10 burst into the penalty area, bouncing the ball off his chest and almost falling but managing to poke a shot past Munoz to bring up his 49th international goal.

However, Leo Messi’s international legacy also includes a hat-trick and a couple of amazing goals against Argentina’s bitter rivals Brazil. Two of these in recent years deserves mention. In 2010, he scored a 92nd-minute matchwinner against Brazil by dribbling past four defenders including Thiago Silva and David Luis in Qatar. However, the best was saved for the incredible goal that won Argentina the epic 4-3 thriller in 2012.

Messi also has great timing when running into the box as shown in the goal against Nigeria. Argentina’s 2-1 victory over Bosnia & Herzegovina was lit up by another Messi moment: consisting of a one-two with Gonzalo Higuain and a brilliant trademark run dribbling through defenders ending in a low shot in off the post.  

This loss to Chile was another heartbreak. The 23-year title drought continues. He may be the best of his generation, but when the question is of the greatest of all time, failing to secure even one winners medal in three attempts surely places him on a lower pedestal than Pele or Maradona. 

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