Lionel Messi the sun king makes Argentina blind to new tricks

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Jorge Sampaoli’s team are geared to an extraordinary degree around their star but heads-down servicing of the princeling may not be the way to win a World Cup

Fame, fame, fatal fame. It can play hideous tricks on the brain. Here is an unexpected World Cup statistic. With the opening seven days of Russia 2018 done, one outfield player has run less over 90 minutes than anyone else in any position in any team. His name? Why, it’s Lionel Messi! Yes, that Messi: many people’s choice as the most gloriously talented player at this tournament; and a man consumed with a sense of voracious personal destiny that he might still drive Argentina on to win this World Cup.

But it seems it will be only at his own speed and in a way that reflects both his extraordinary status within the Argentina team and a sport that is geared more than ever towards the cult of the star.

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Written by Barney Ronay in St Petersburg
This news first appeared on https://www.theguardian.com/football/2018/jun/20/lionel-messi-sun-king-argentina-blind-world-cup under the title “Lionel Messi the sun king makes Argentina blind to new tricks”. Bolchha Nepal is not responsible or affiliated towards the opinion expressed in this news article.