Lionel Messi has suggested that he wants to continue playing football until the next FIFA World Cup but openly admitted the age might make it difficult for him.
The Argentina captain will be turning 39-year-old at the 2026 edition that will be co-hosted by the United States, Canada and Mexico.
“Because of age it’ll be difficult to make 2026,” Messi told Argentine publication Diario Olé. “I love playing football and while I feel like I’m in good shape and enjoying this, I’m going to keep at it. It seems like a long time until the next World Cup, but it depends on how my career is going.”
Messi holds the Argentine records for caps (172) as well as goals (98). He finally got his hands on the World Cup after his side beat France in the final.
The superstar also won another major trophy on the international stage with victory over Brazil in last year’s Copa America final.
And Argentine manager Lionel Scaloni holds optimism on Messi’s future.
“I think Messi can make it to the next World Cup,” Scaloni told Spanish radio Calvia FM last month, as cited by ESPN. “It will depend a lot on what he wants and what happens over time, that he feels good. The doors will always be open. He is happy on the pitch, and for us [it] would be good.”