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Lionel Messi update adds to mystery as Inter Miami star sits on the fence over future

Lionel Messi has added to the mystery over whether he will star at the next World Cup with another coy response on the subject.

The Inter Miami talisman is set to be 39 years old by the time the next tournament rolls around, and it remains to be seen whether he can be convinced to play. Given his exploits at the last World Cup, the Argentine superstar is regularly asked whether he is likely to defend the trophy in three years’ time.

In truth, the former Barcelona hero has shown signs of fatigue while attempting to juggle his commitments for club and country of late. After an action-packed summer, which saw him lead Miami to glory in the Leagues Cup, his availability has been mixed in the past month.

He received the call-up to represent Argentina in World Cup qualifier clashes versus Ecuador and Bolivia but eventually only featured against the former. After scoring the winner with a sublime free-kick, he was substituted and was unable to appear in the next game.

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His fitness struggles do not seem to have dampened Messi’s desire to feature for his nation, however, and it seems that he still has plans to appear for a while yet. Speaking to Migue Granados, he explained what his long-term plans for his international career are as things stand.

He admitted: “I don’t know if I will reach it. I said that before. I’m not thinking about it yet because it’s far away”.

With the megastar having proven popular with supporters in the US, there will also be a clamour to see him in action at the upcoming Copa America in 2024 in the country.

Addressing the possibility, he added: “I’m thinking about Copa America. The goal is to arrive in good shape for Copa America in the United States. It’s going to be great. It will be looked into depending on how I feel at the time.”