Lionel Messi: Argentina Captain Signs Panama Player’s Shirt After 2–0 Win

Lionel Messi: Argentina Captain Signs Panama Player’s Shirt After 2–0 Win

Elijah Odetokun
updated at April 12, 2023 at 8:29 PM
In this article:
FIFA World Cup logo
FIFA World Cup
Lionel Messi logo
Inter Miami CF logoFArgentina logo
  • World champions Argentina played their first game on home soil since their triumph in Qatar
  • La Albiceleste ran out 2-0 winners with Lionel Messi capping it off with a beautiful freekick
  • Messi showed class by signing the jersey of a Panama player after the match

It has been over three months since Argentina emerged victorious at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, beating defending champions France 4-2 on penalties after a pulsating 3-3 draw in 120 minutes.

The victorious team had a bus parade in Buenos Aires days later, and each player visited their hometowns before club football resumed usually.

March is the first international break of the FIFA calendar, and it presented the team with an opportunity of playing for the first time as world champions in front of their home fans in a packed El Monumental.

Lionel Messi, Argentina, El Monumental, Panama, World Cup.
Lionel Messi celebrates with Argentina fans after their 2-0 win over Panama at El Monumental in Buenos Aires. Photo by Daniel Jayo.
Source: Getty Images

Thiago Almada scored in the 78th minute before Messi scored a brilliant freekick to wrap it off in the 89th minute and earn a win for the world champions in their first game since their triumph in Qatar.

Exciting feature: Check out news exactly for YOU ➡️ click on "Recommended for you" and enjoy!

Messi signs Panama player's jersey

The freekick against Panama was Messi's 800th career goal for club and country, as reported by Sports Illustrated, and there is no better time and place to score it than in front of his country's people.

The Argentinian people were not the only ones in a celebratory mood; Panama players joined Messi in celebrating his milestone. As noted by ESPN FC, he signed on the shirt of Ivan Anderson.

Panama players fight over Fernandez's jersey

Qatar 2022 young player of the tournament, Enzo Fernandez, played his first game on home soil yesterday, having not played in Argentina before heading for the World Cup.

Panama players were fighting over who would get his jersey after yesterday's match, which left the Chelsea player laughing. As observed by Football London, he beckoned to another player and exchanged shirts in the tunnel.

Messi tipped to return to Barcelona

Sports Brief earlier reported that Sergio Aguero has tipped Messi to return to Barcelona when his contract expires with Paris Saint-Germain at the end of the season.

The former Barcelona captain joined PSG after the Blaugrana could not register his contract in 2021. He is nearing the end of his two-year contract in Paris and is yet to sign an extension.

Elijah Odetokun photo
Elijah Odetokun
Elijah Odetokun is Reuters-trained journalist with three years of experience having previously worked at Daily Times Nigeria, OmaSports and El Futbolero.