Lionel Messi Explains Decision to Sit Out the 2026 World Cup
Football fans might never get to see Lionel Messi play at the FIFA World Cup again, the next edition will be hosted in three countries ( USA, Canada, and Mexico) in 2026.
The former Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain player, ruled himself out of the competition after he led Argentina to winning the 2022 edition which was hosted in Qatar. Messi made this known in an interview that was held in China ahead of Argentina's friendly match against Australia.
He was also asked about how important the Ballon d'Or was important to him at this point in his career.
Ballon d’Or? At this point in my career, if it comes, it's good, and if it doesn't, nothing happens. Does Ballon d’Or matters to me? No, at this stage in my life, it is no longer important to me. I have always said, that individual prizes are not what matters to me, but the collective ones are the most important to me. The most important prize at the moment is the World Cup. This is the greatest prize for me. As I said earlier, I don't think I will participate in the next World Cup. I haven't changed my mind about that. I'd like to be there to watch it, but I'm not going to participate. After I achieved the World Cup that I was missing, I am satisfied and grateful for the career I have made, and this is what is most important to me.
Messi had recently decided not to renew his contract with PSG but decided to sign a deal with Inter Miami in the United States of America.