Lionel Messi Out of Argentina’s US Friendlies: Fans Receive 50% Refund Following Hong Kong Controversy

Lionel Messi, the renowned football icon, has been sidelined from participating in Argentina’s friendly matches against El Salvador and Costa Rica in the United States.

This decision follows an official announcement from the Argentina Football Association (AFA) concerning Messi’s hamstring injury sustained during a recent match, leading to his unavailability for the upcoming games.

Lionel Messi Out of Argentina’s US Friendlies: Fans Receive 50% Refund Following Hong Kong Controversy

The injury, affecting Messi‘s right leg hamstring, occurred during his team’s clash with Nashville SC, prompting his substitution just after half-time. As a precautionary measure, both his club, Inter Miami, and the Argentine national team have opted to exclude him from the squad to avoid exacerbating the injury.

This setback comes at a crucial time as Argentina prepares for the Copa America scheduled for June-July, hosted in the U.S. These friendlies were crucial warmups for the national team, emphasizing the significance of Messi’s absence.

In a statement released by the Argentine federation, they mentioned, “The captain of Argentina, Lionel Messi, will not be able to participate in the squad for the friendlies in the USA due to a minor hamstring injury.” This injury, although categorized as minor, requires sufficient recovery time to ensure Messi’s fitness for future competitive fixtures.

This unfortunate development underscores the challenges faced by Lionel Scaloni’s squad, compounded by previous injuries to key players such as Paulo Dybala, Exequiel Palacios, and Marcos Senesi. Despite these setbacks, the team remains focused on regaining full strength ahead of crucial upcoming competitions.

As Messi continues his recovery from the hamstring issue, Inter Miami and Argentine fans eagerly await his return to full fitness, anticipating his impactful contributions on the field.

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Lionel Messi Fans Receive 50% Refund Following Hong Kong Controversy

Lionel Messi enthusiasts who eagerly anticipated his appearance in Hong Kong are set to receive a 50% refund for the event that left many disappointed. Despite a sold-out crowd shelling out 880 Hong Kong dollars ($110) each to witness Messi’s prowess on February 4, he was sidelined due to an injury, sparking dissatisfaction among attendees.

The debacle ensued during an Inter Miami tour match against a Hong Kong select XI, where Messi, an eight-time Ballon d’Or winner, was anticipated to showcase his talents. However, his absence from the field resulted in boos from the audience and escalated into a political controversy in China, viewing his non-participation as a deliberate snub.

In response to the backlash, Tatler Asia, the event organizer, has offered a partial refund to individuals who purchased tickets through official channels. The refund, amounting to 50% of the ticket price, comes with the condition that recipients refrain from pursuing legal action against the organizer.

Following criticism over the mismanagement of the event, Tatler Asia withdrew its application for a HK$16 million government grant meant to support the match, indicating the severity of the fallout from Messi’s absence.

The saga didn’t end there, as Inter Miami proceeded to Japan after Hong Kong, where Messi made a 30-minute appearance in a friendly match against Vissel Kobe in Tokyo, further intensifying the frustration among Chinese fans.

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