All eyes are on Messi as Argentina train ahead of Croatia clash | News Qatar 2022 World Cup
Messi is set to become the record-breaking appearances in World Cup history when Argentina take on Croatia in the semi-finals.
Doha, Qatar- The cameras clicked and panned with That of Lionel Messi every move, as reporters rushed to record their parts on camera with the Argentine captain in the backdrop.
Around 400 journalists, mostly photographers and videographers, gathered at Qatar University on Monday to watch Argentina train ahead of their semi-final showdown against Croatia on Tuesday evening at the Lusail stadium.
The media came mainly from Argentina and Latin America. They had 15 minutes to gather as much footage and photos before security escorted everyone out.
The 35 year old star declared before the tournament that it would be his last World Cup, which only brought increased attention.
He has won every major club and national team title except the world Cup. He came close in 2014, but the South Americans lost to Germany in the final.
The “little magician” should equal another record tomorrow. It will be his 25th World Cup game, which will put him level with German great Lothar Matthaus as the record holder for appearances in World Cup history.
If the Albiceleste reach the final, they will hold the absolute record.
On Monday, he was all smiles and showed no signs of pressure or nervousness.
The players stepped out onto the floodlit training ground shortly after 5:30 p.m. (1430 GMT) Doha time.
The players in their dark blue training kit appeared to be in good spirits, with smiles and jokes all around with loud laughter from time to time. Argentina have lost one game in their last 41 matches.
Players spent most of the 15 minutes doing basic drills, mostly goalkeeping and crossings, jogging or stretching.
As the reporters walked out, the players gathered in the center of the pitch with the coaching staff joining them. Far from the gaze of the media, it was going to get serious.