Lionel Messi said, “Argentina going out in the first round, not happening”, as he and his companions escaped elimination in the World Cup with a second victory by 2-1 against Nigeria on Tuesday.
Messi scored the first opener for Argentina, but the second penalty from Nigeria for some time showed them the departure door until Marcos Rojo added one more on the boards in the 86th Minute.
After opening the tie with Iceland and a 3-0 defeat by Croatia, the stress on Argentina and Messi was obvious, but he said the players still had a belief that they will succeed.
“It was a great method to qualify,” said Messi. “It took loads of efforts, but we do not deserve to walk out in the first round, so we’re very happy, we knew we would win, but we did not expect it to be as hard as it has been.”
Messi admitted that Argentina feels nervous when it reaches victory and declares that this is a great relief for the whole squad and the nation as well.
“It was a well-balanced game; we had full control on the game for the first half. We had better possession, tried to make the opportunities even after the first goal, and we believe the second half also went the way we expected,” Messi said at a press conference after the match. “However, they managed to score a penalty, and that goal made the situation complicated as we were panicky. We were going notion as the time was passing swiftly.”
The pressure on the success and criticism of the fans led Messi to resign two years ago, but he thanked the fans for their vocals in St. Petersburg.
“I want to thank all the fans for the huge sacrifice they have made to fill the stadium, and the people who are suffering in Argentina,” he said.