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#pounditTuesday, May 30, 2023

Lionel Messi’s mother says World Cup pressure makes him ‘suffer and cry’

Argentina star Lionel Messi has often been criticized for his lack of success on the international stage, and his mother says it’s taken a toll on him.

Celia Cuccittini told Argentine television network El Trece that her son puts immense pressure on himself to win the World Cup, and that it is his primary goal.

“His aim is to bring the Cup home, to win the World Cup,” Cuccittini said, via Adriana Garcia of ESPN FC. “It’s one of his biggest desires. We see him suffer and cry at times.

“He is the first who wants to bring the Cup with him. He more than anyone would give everything for this to be his World Cup.”

Messi has been criticized for what some believe is insufficient devotion to the national team, but his mother also feels that this is unfair.

“We suffer from all the criticism that Leo receives,” Cuccittini said. “When people say that he doesn’t feel it or that he plays for the national team out of obligation, that hurts as a mother and as a family. Luckily, people love him a lot and they transmit that to him and he values this a lot. As a mother, I do, too.”

Messi’s Argentina career has been difficult at times, as he has faced astronomically high expectations from both fans and media. This has sometimes caused tension and fraught relationships, and played a role in his decision to briefly quit the international stage two years ago.

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