Alvarez sorry over Messi World Cup jersey rant

By: AFP
Published: 10:12 AM, 1 Dec, 2022
Alvarez sorry over Messi World Cup jersey rant
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World boxing champion Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez issued an apology to Lionel Messi on Wednesday after accusing the Argentine World Cup star of mistreating a Mexican soccer jersey.

Alvarez took to Twitter last weekend to vent anger at Messi, saying the football star had "insulted" Mexico by appearing to place his foot on an El Tri jersey on the floor of the Argentina locker room.

"Did you see Messi cleaning the changing room with our jersey and flag????" Mexican icon Alvarez wrote on Twitter.

"He had better ask God that I don't find him!!"

Alvarez's outburst elicited immediate responses from those defending Messi and claiming there was nothing unusual about a football jersey being on the floor after a match.

Argentina captain Messi had apparently swapped shirts with his Mexico counterpart Andres Guardado.

On Wednesday, Alvarez, 32, apologised to Messi and Argentina, saying he had over-reacted.

"I was carried away by the passion and love I feel for my country and I made comments that were out of place for which I want to apologize to Messi and the people of Argentina," Alvarez wrote on Twitter.

"Every day we learn something new and this time it was my turn.

"I wish both teams much success in their matches today and will continue supporting Mexico until the end."

Both Mexico and Argentina are battling to qualify from Group C at the World Cup.

Maradona would be 'super happy'

Lionel Messi believes Diego Maradona would be "super happy" after he led Argentina into the World Cup last 16 on Wednesday thanks to a 2-0 win over Poland.

Messi became his country's most capped player at the tournament with a 22nd appearance surpassing his legendary compatriot who died just over two years ago.

"I learned it recently, I didn't know it. It's a pleasure to be able to continue to achieve these kinds of records. I think Diego would be super happy for me, because he always showed me a lot of affection, he was always happy when things went well for me," said Messi.

Despite missing a penalty -- his 39th career failure from the spot -- the Argentina captain said he was "happy" with this "big match".

"We achieved our first objective, which was to get out of the group after starting the way we did (a shock 2-1 loss against Saudi Arabia)," said Messi.

"I was really frustrated to have missed the penalty, because I knew that a goal could change the whole match, that it makes you play in a different way. But I think that from the penalty I missed, the team came out stronger."

Messi, who still needs a World Cup winner's medal to cement his legacy as one of the sport's greatest players, believes Argentina are moving up through the gears at precisely the right time.

"After the first goal, everything went our way. We started doing again what we had been trying to do since the start of the World Cup, but which we hadn't been able to achieve for various reasons.

"Having been able to do it today, it gives us confidence for the future."

Next up for Argentina is a last-16 clash against Australia on Saturday.

"We know that now everything will be very difficult. That whoever the opponent, it will be complicated. We have seen recently, at our own expense, that any opponent can play a good game and win."

Categories : FIFA World Cup
AFP

Agence France-Presse is an international news agency.