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13th Oct 2023

Messi has brilliant response to Paraguay player who spits at him

Callum Boyle

Lionel Messi

Messi wasn’t letting him get away with that

Lionel Messi appeared to be spat at during Argentina’s World Cup qualifier against Paraguay on Thursday.

Messi was introduced as a second half substitute as the defending world champions beat their South American counterparts 1-0 thanks to Nicolas Otamendi’s third minute goal.

The Inter Miami star has featured sporadically for club and country in recent weeks while he continues to recover from a muscle injury but was heavily involved when he replaced Julian Alvarez in the 53rd minute.

There was one unsavoury incident in which Paraguay’s Antonio Sanabria appeared to spit in the direction of the number 10 to which he turned around and exchanged verbals with Sanabria before walking away.

After the game, when asked if it was true, Messi was unable to provide a clear answer on the incident with Sanabria but did make a parting shot to the former Barcelona youth player.

He said: “They told me that someone spat at me in the locker room, I didn’t see it… The truth is that I don’t even know who this boy is. I don’t want to give him any importance either because he’ll talk about it and become known.”

Despite his limited game time, the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner still impressed in Buenos Aires as he weaved his way past defender and almost got his name on the scoresheet himself, only to see his free-kick cannon back off the post.

Earlier on, he almost scored directly from a corner, but once again, that audacious effort hit the post.

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