Friday 20 September, 2019

Injured Messi watches Argentina crushed 6-1 by Spain

Lionel Messi, right, watches the international friendly football match between Spain and Argentina at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, March 27, 2018.

Lionel Messi, right, watches the international friendly football match between Spain and Argentina at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, March 27, 2018.

With Lionel Messi rested, Argentina were crushed 6-1 by Spain on Tuesday as Francisco "Isco" Alarcon led the way by scoring a hat trick.

Messi watched from the stands at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid as Spain dealt Argentina a humbling loss in the last match before their coaches pick their squads for this summer's World Cup.

While Spain remained undefeated in 18 matches under Julen Lopetegui and strengthened their credentials as a favourite for the title in Russia, Jorge Sampaoli will face more doubts about Argentina's chances to finally win a World Cup title with Messi.

Diego Costa, Thiago Alcantara and half-time substitute Iago Aspas also scored for Spain.

A minor leg problem kept Messi from playing in Argentina's 2-0 win over Italy in Manchester, England, on Friday.

Sampaoli had said on Monday that his star player was better and that he expected him to play against Spain, but he left him out of his squad come match time.

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