Messi focuses on Panama match

Buenos Aires, June 9 (IANS) Still buzzing after the victory in the the team’s 2016 Centennial Copa America opening match against Chile, Argentine fans expect soccer star Lionel Messi to play in the upcoming match against Panama on Friday.

Argentina travelled on Wednesday to Chicago, where the match against Panama will be played, Xinhua reported quoting Cuban news agency Prensa Latina.

If Argentina wins Friday’s match, it will guarantee their place in the quarter-finals.

The Argentine media said Messi has been training but without doing anything too strenuous since he is still recovering from a lower back injury. Despite this, he is expected to be part of the team in Argentina’s second match in the first stage of the tournament, as part of Group D.

On Facebook, Messi said the success against Chile “was a great victory and it is always important to begin a tournament with a winning result. I hope to be ready as soon as possible to help the team.”

Coach Gerardo Martino expected Messi to be ready to play against Panama and may let he rest during the third match against Bolivia, considering four days after the match the quarter-finals will begin.

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