Despite the pair being sworn mortal enemies, Cristiano Ronaldo has offered a sympathetic take on Lionel Messi’s current international predicament.
Indeed, Ronaldo has admitted that it pained him to see Messi in tears after Argentina successfully upheld their 23-year trophy-less streak by losing out to Chile in the Copa America.
After losing out in his fourth major final with his country, Messi – who missed a penalty in the shoot-out – sobbed on the pitch before announcing his international retirement in the immediate aftermath of the game.
However, Ronaldo has been openly supportive of Messi deciding to call it quits at the grand old age of 29 while also asking fans to appreciate that it probably wasn’t a decision his contemporary took lightly.
According to AS, the Portuguese star told the Argentinian press:
He (Messi) has has taken a tough decision and people should understand.
He is not accustomed to defeats and disappointments. Finishing second and missing a penalty does not make you a bad player.
It hurts to see Messi in tears and I hope he returns to play for his country, because he needs it.
How nice. It’s almost as if the pair aren’t pitched in some kind of eternal one-on-one battle and are actually fairly mutually respective of one another.
Seems as good a time as any to post this little beauty again…