Ex-US President Barack Obama brands Lionel Messi ‘wonderful’ as he offers Argentina hero advice over World Cup struggles

LIONEL MESSI’S struggles to win the World Cup are a lesson to those who think they can achieve greatness alone, according to Barack Obama.

The former President of the United States has described Messi as “wonderful” in a speech aimed at inspiring young people.

 Obama is rumoured to be a West Ham fan


Obama is rumoured to be a West Ham fanCredit: Reuters
 Messi will lead his country in the upcoming Copa America championship


Messi will lead his country in the upcoming Copa America championshipCredit: Getty Images – Getty

At the EXMA Conference in the Colombian capital of Bogota, Obama discussed how the iconic striker fits into his wider philosophy.

He said: “Even people that we consider geniuses work with other people in order to develop their style.

“In Argentina, even though Messi is wonderful, they have problems winning the World Cup.

“My advice to young people is that we have to recognise very few people achieve great things on their own.”

Indeed, Messi has struggled to translate his success with Barcelona to the national stage.

Many Argentine fans, perhaps as a result of his lack of silverware or because he moved to Spain as a teenager, don’t necessarily see him as one of their own.

With the 31-year-old leading their line, La Albiceleste have only reached the latter stages of the World Cup once – losing to Germany in the 2014 final.

His struggles even translate to the Copa America, a tournament which Argentina have lost on penalties in consecutive finals.

After the 2016 defeat to Chile, which saw Messi miss his spot-kick, he announced his international retirement amid the criticism but quickly returned.

He will be hoping to finally get over the line and lift a trophy as national team captain in this year’s Copa America, which kicks off from Brazil next month.

Ex-US President Barack Obama campaigns in Virginia for Democratic candidates Tim Kaine and Jennifer Wexton ahead of US mid-terms

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