Messi demands ‘respect’ amid ‘c*** sucker’ allegations as Darwin Nunez helps down Argentina

Robin Bairner
Robin Bairner
  • 17 Nov 2023 02:19 CST
  • 3 min read
Lionel Messi speaks after Argentina's World Cup qualifying defeat to Uruguay
© ProShots

Lionel Messi has hit out at Uruguay’s players after they defeated Argentina 2-0 in World Cup qualifying, claiming that they need to learn “respect”.

Liverpool forward Darwin Nunez was on target three minutes from time to seal the points for the visitors, who had taken the lead shortly before the break via Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo.

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The game, however, was noted for the fiery manner in which it was played. Uruguay midfielder Manuel Ugarte, who plays his club football with PSG, is alleged to have called Rodrigo De Paul a “Messi c*** sucker’ during an angry exchange.

After an encounter in which seven players made their way into the referee’s notebook, Messi gave his thoughts on the behaviour of Uruguay.

“I'd rather not say what I'm thinking but the younger people need to learn. They have a good group but they need to learn from the veterans how to respect. These games are always intense but very respectful, so they have to learn a little,” the angry Argentina captain, who now turns out for Inter Miami, told Telemundo in the immediate aftermath of the defeat.

Will Argentina qualify for the World Cup?

It is the first blemish on Argentina’s record in qualifying, with their four previous victories carrying them to the top of the CONMEBOL qualifying group. Uruguay have moved into second in the standings, with Colombia and Venezuela third and fourth respectively.

Brazil’s difficult start to the qualifying campaign continued as they were defeated 2-1 away to Colombia, with Luis Diaz scoring twice in the closing 15 minutes of the match to turnaround a 1-0 deficit. His father, recently released by kidnappers, was pictured celebrating ecstatically in the stands.

Although Brazil are fifth, the top six automatically reach the 2026 World Cup, with the seventh-placed side going into a playoff to reach the competition, which will be held across North America.

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