Messi's physical condition a big concern for Argentina

11:15, June 12, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

Lionel Messi's hopes of being crowned the best player at the World Cup could be dashed by exhaustion even though the Argentina team said on Thursday all 23 squad members were fit.

"(Messi) has arrived at the World Cup tired, the damage is already done and it's irreversible," Argentina's fitness coach Fernando Signorini told the Catalan magazine Sport.

However, team doctor Donato Villani told a news conference later that all of coach Diego Maradona's squad, including Messi, were fit for selection for Saturday's Group B opener against Nigeria.

"The 23 players are in optimum condition," Villani said in a brief statement to a packed media room after the team's late afternoon practice.

Signorini, Maradona's personal fitness coach during part of his playing career in Europe, said too much was being expected of the young forward who turns 23 in two weeks' time.

"(The organizers) worry about the doping controls but not if players play 70 matches a year," he said this week after an early morning visit by anti-doping testers to Argentina's University of Pretoria camp.

'Looking good'

Fans and media have seen little of the Barcelona ace over the past four weeks although he has been involved in Argentina's practices during the two weeks the squad has been in South Africa.

Having missed Argentina's 5-0 win over Canada in their last warm-up 17 days ago due to a minor knee injury, Messi's last match was in La Liga on May 16. He last played for Argentina against Germany in Munich on March 3.

"He looks really good to me, very keen, dreaming of having a great World Cup," midfielder Juan Veron said of Messi.

"But I think that to pile all the responsibility on him for what might happen at the World Cup is not good, that's why there are 23 of us in the squad," he said.

"I hope he can give all that football he has inside him."

Signorini said Messi "is almost a miracle of genetics because in a single movement he makes six or seven (movements). "It's his calling to be one of the best (players) in history and surely at the next World Cup he'll be better than in this because to his talent he will add experience."

Source:China Daily
Special Report: World Cup 2010945369.jpg'>


  • Do you have anything to say?



Related Channel News

Special Coverage
  • Premier Wen Jiabao visits Hungary, Britain, Germany
  • From drought to floods
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Giant red lantern lights up in Tiananmen Square to celebrate the coming National Day on Oct. 1. (Xinhua/Li Xin)
  • A ceremony is held in Taipei, southeast China's Taiwan, on Sept. 28, 2011, to commemorate the 2,562nd birthday of Confucius (551-479 BC), a Chinese thinker, educationist and philosopher. (Xinhua/Wu Ching-teng)
  • The world's first Boeing 787 Dreamliner for delivery arrives at Haneda airport in Tokyo, capital of Japan, on Sept. 28, 2011. The Boeing 787 Dreamliner, whose buyer is All Nippon Airways (ANA), will implement a flight of ANA on Oct. 26 from Tokyo's Narita Airport to Hong Kong in south China. (Xinhua/Ji Chunpeng)
  • A Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) fighter shows what is believed to be human jawbone found inside a mass grave near Abu Salim prison in Tripoli, Libya, Spet. 27, 2011. The NTC on Sunday said they had found a mass grave containing the bodies of 1,270 people killed by Gaddafi's security forces in a 1996 massacre at Abu Salim prison in southern Tripoli. (Xinhua/Li Muzi)
  • Rescue workers and local residents search for survivors after a building collapsed in old Delhi, India, Sept. 27, 2011. At least 10 people were killed and 35 injured when an old three-storey building collapsed. More than a dozen people are still feared trapped under the debris, police said. (Xinhua/Partha Sarkar)
  • A visitor has flying experience in the windmill castle of Jinshitan National Holiday resort in Dalian, northeast China's Liaoning Province, Sept. 27, 2011. The castle is a 23-meter-high building with 21 meters in diameter. The castle uses wind tunnel to make objects floating in the air. It is the first indoor stadium in China, which enables people to have flying experience. (Xinhua/Zhang Chunlei)
Hot Forum Discussion