Lionel Messi will lead Argentina at the Copa America Centenario next month but will miss the Olympic Games in August.
Argentina captain Lionel Messi admitted he would have liked play in the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro soon after he was left out of the squad in favour of your Copa America Centenario.
Coach Gerardo Martino opted against producing Messi – who won gold in the Beijing Games in 2008 – compete at both June’s Copa America and the Olympics in August.
Martino stressed that the Barcelona star agreed together with the selection, but Messi conceded he’s disappointed not be involved for the campaign in Brazil.
“I would have liked to go since it was a spectacular experience for me to play inside the  Olympics, just since it was for the  U20 World Cup,” Messi told ESPN.
“Not simply because we won, but for the practical experience I gained.
“It was a terrific knowledge to remain inside the Olympic Village and meet other elite athletes from other sports and to become just one more athlete amongst them; that was incredibly spectacular despite the fact that we did not spend a whole lot of time inside the village.”
Messi, who is on the cusp of a further La Liga title heading in to the final round on the season, added: “World Cup is wonderful but Olympics are a thing specific.”
Argentina – runners-up to Chile at final year’s Copa America – will now have a fully-focused Messi at their disposal as they bid to win the competitors for the very first time since 1993.
The 14-time champions – drawn in Group D – will face defending champions Chile inside a rematch in the 2015 final on June 6 inside the Usa, followed by games against Panama (June 10) and Bolivia (June 14).
“It is often a new Copa, unique. Extremely nice within the Usa and pretty diverse from what I’ve played ahead of as a result of the folks, the stadiums,” Messi mentioned.
“That will make it diverse and for us, a brand new opportunity.”