Messi’s Absence Leads to Cancellation of Argentina’s China Tour

Argentina’s national soccer team has canceled its planned tour of China, after local authorities withdrew their invitation, following Lionel Messi’s no-show at a friendly match in Hong Kong. The star player did not play in the match against Inter Miami, which was part of a promotional deal with a Chinese company. The decision has angered and disappointed the Chinese fans, who were looking forward to seeing Messi and his teammates in action.


The Reason for the Cancellation: Messi’s Failure to Play in Hong Kong

The reason for the cancellation of Argentina’s China tour was Messi’s failure to play in a friendly match against Inter Miami, which was held in Hong Kong last weekend. The match was organized by the Chinese company Super Sports Media, which has the exclusive rights to broadcast the Spanish league, La Liga, in China. The company had paid a hefty fee to bring Messi and his club, Barcelona, to Hong Kong, as part of a marketing strategy to attract more viewers and subscribers.

However, Messi did not play in the match, citing a minor injury. He only appeared briefly on the pitch before the game, waving to the fans and posing for photos. He then watched the game from the stands, as his team lost 2-1 to Inter Miami. The fans, who had paid up to $1,000 for a ticket, felt cheated and booed Messi throughout the game. They also expressed their frustration and anger on social media, accusing Messi of being disrespectful and dishonest.

The Consequence of the Cancellation: The Loss of Opportunity and Revenue

The consequence of the cancellation of Argentina’s China tour was the loss of opportunity and revenue for both the team and the host country. Argentina was scheduled to play two friendly matches in China, one against Ivory Coast in Beijing, and one against an Asian team in Shanghai. The matches were part of Argentina’s preparation for the World Cup qualifiers, which will resume in March. The matches were also expected to generate millions of dollars in income for the team, as well as for the Chinese organizers and sponsors.

However, after Messi’s no-show in Hong Kong, the Chinese authorities decided to withdraw their invitation to Argentina, and to cancel the matches. They said that they were disappointed and dissatisfied with Messi’s behavior, and that they did not want to risk another disappointment for the fans. They also said that they wanted to protect the image and reputation of Chinese soccer, which has been trying to improve its quality and popularity in recent years.

The Reaction to the Cancellation: The Apology and the Regret

The reaction to the cancellation of Argentina’s China tour was the apology and the regret from both sides. Argentina’s soccer federation, AFA, issued a statement, apologizing to the Chinese fans and authorities, and explaining that Messi’s absence was due to a medical reason, and not a lack of respect or interest. The statement also expressed the hope that Argentina and China could maintain their good relations, and that they could reschedule the matches in the future.

Messi also issued a personal apology, through his social media accounts, saying that he was sorry for not playing in Hong Kong, and that he had hoped to play in China. He said that he had a minor muscle injury, which prevented him from playing, and that he did not want to risk aggravating it. He also said that he appreciated the support and affection of the Chinese fans, and that he hoped to see them soon.

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