Lionel Messi rules out of Olympics

Football icon Lionel Messi officially rules himself out of Argentina national team in the Olympics this summer in Paris.

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Messi rules out of Olympics

Messi, 36, is set to lead Argentina in their title-defense campaign in this year’s Copa America.

The men’s Olympic football tournament runs from July 24 to Aug. 9. 

The Inter Miami star said he talked to Argentina U23 coach Javier Mascherano, and it won’t be possible for him to suit up in all tournaments.

“I talked to Mascherano and the truth is we both understood the situation,” he said. “It’s hard [to think about the Olympics right now] because we’re in Copa América. It would be two, three straight months of not being with the club, and more than anything I’m not at an age to be in everything.

“I have to choose carefully, and it would be too much to play two straight tournaments. I’ve been very lucky to play in the Olympics, of winning it together with Masche. It was a wonderful experience on a football level. Olympics, U20, memories I’ll never forget.

“It’s spectacular to be fortunate enough to go through all that. I hope that the guys who get to go enjoy it in the same way that I did because it’s special. The Olympics are special, different from anything else.”

Messi to focus on his Inter Miami duty

Messi could miss many games for Inter Miami if he plays in the Olympics.

After all, he will be missing at least five games while with Argentina at the Copa America.

The eight-time Ballon d’Or winner has 11 goals and 12 assists in 12 matches, helping the team reach the top of the Supporters’ Shield standings.