Age won’t determine when I retire, says Messi

Published March 28, 2024
Paris St Germain’s Lionel Messi in action — Reuters
Paris St Germain’s Lionel Messi in action — Reuters

MIAMI: Lionel Messi will not consider his age as a deciding factor in his retirement plans, the Argentine forward said, adding that he has no clear idea of what he will do when that time comes.

Messi, who played for 17 years at Barcelona before signing for Paris St Germain in 2021 and Inter Miami last year, will turn 37 in under three months but knows for sure that his age will not determine when it is time to hang up his boots.

“I know that the moment I feel that I am no longer performing, that I am no longer enjoying it or helping my teammates [I will retire],” Messi told the Big Time podcast in an interview published on Wednesday.

“I am very self-critical. I know when I am doing well, when I am not, when I play well and when I play poorly. When I feel it’s time to take that step, I will do it without thinking about age. If I feel good, I will try to continue competing because it’s what I like and what I know how to do.”

Asked whether he had started to think about what he does next, the record eight-time Ballon D’Or winner had no straight answer.

“I haven’t thought about it yet. For now, I try to enjoy each day, each moment, without thinking about the future. I don’t have anything clear yet,” Messi said. “I hope to keep playing for a while longer, because that’s what I enjoy. When the time comes, I will surely find the path to what fulfils me and what I like, and a new role.”

Messi missed Arge­ntina’s friendly victories against El Salvador and Costa Rica in the United States this month due to a ham­string injury.

Published in Dawn, March 28th, 2024

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