Playing for Spain was never something I considered, says Messi


And Messi who won the Olympic gold medal after Argentina beat the West Africans in the final in 2008, bagged three goals in the 17th, 58th and 66th minute of the game.

It was earlier reported that Simon was dropped after failing to shake off the injury he sustained, but the Nigeria Football Federation chieftain asked for a second opinion on the winger to ascertain if he will be fit for the World Cup proper. We have good players and we're getting stronger.

But, as brilliant as he may be, even the Barcelona talisman can not carry Argentinian hopes all on his shoulders without help from his supporting cast if they are to lift the World Cup trophy on July 15.

Messi moved to Barcelona at the age of 13 and would have been eligible to play for Spain.

"But it wouldn't have been the same".

"I would change a Barcelona title for one with the national team", Messi said.

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CLAUDIO CANIGGIA, former Argentina striker, urging Lionel Messi's team-mates to give him the support which Diego Maradona got during his playing days. "But I've always said I hoped to play football in Argentina some day, though I don't know if that will happen.but I keep it in mind", he said.

"It would be Newell's, no one else. I would like to do that for at least six months, but you never know what will happen".

Argentina are in group D alongwith Croatia, Iceland and Nigeria.

Euro 2016 darlings Iceland proved their shock run to the quarter-finals in France was no fluke after topping a qualifying section that included Croatia, Ukraine and Turkey to become the smallest nation to compete at a World Cup.

The VAR system will be rolled out for the first time at a World Cup at the June 14 to July 15 tournament in Russian Federation. Messi followed the shot with an easy right footed finish.

Argentina failed to add to their tally but should have been further ahead against Haiti, whose sole appearance at the World Cup finals came in 1974 and are ranked 108th in the world, 103 places below them in the world rankings.