Messi scored one goal and assisted the other during the match, taking his total to 8 World Cup goals (equal to Diego Maradona). It wasn’t until Argentina defender, Nicolas Otamendi posted a clip of Messi leading the celebrations in the changing room when the incident that upset Canelo occurred.
The video shows the entire Argentina team celebrating their win in the dressing room and the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner can be seen sat down with a Mexico shirt on the floor Infront of him, as he appears to brush the shirt off his foot using his other foot.
Super-middleweight champion and proud citizen of Mexico Canelo Alverez, took offence to this and called out Messi on Twitter in a series of aggressive tweets:
“Did you guys see Messi cleaning the floor with our jersey flag,” Alvarez tweeted.
“He better pray to God that I don’t find him.
“Just like I respect Argentina, he has to respect Mexico! I’m Not talking about the country, I’m talking about Messi because of the bull**** he did.”
Many felt confused by Alvarez’s comments, including Messi’s former Argentina teammate and father of his godson, Sergio Aguero who came to defend his friend.
“Mr. Canelo, don’t look for excuses or problems, surely you don’t know about soccer and what happens in a locker room,” the former Argentina and Man City striker tweeted in response.
Señor canelo no busques excusas o problemas , seguramente no sabes de fútbol y que pasa en un vestuario . Las camisetas siempre después que se terminan los partidos están en el piso por el sudor y después si ves bien hace el movimiento para sacarse el botín y sin querer le da . https://t.co/zfftTXH3JB— Sergio Kun Aguero (@aguerosergiokun) November 28, 2022
While I understand Messi’s actions could be interpreted as offensive, I have to admit that in the video, it didn’t look like Messi was exactly cleaning the dressing room floor with the Mexico jersey.
I imagine an angry Mexican professional boxer calling you out can feel intense, but meanwhile, Messi was over the moon to help guarantee a massive win for Argentina after their 36-game unbeaten run was ended after a shocking defeat to Saudi Arabia in their opening game of the 2022 World Cup.
During a post-match interview after the Mexico game, the 35-year-old said: “The days were very long, and we were eager to have the chance to turn it around. It was a critical game. [Winning] was a weight off our shoulders, and we now have peace of mind.”
There’s everything to play for as Argentina take on Poland on Wednesday (30 Nov) at 7pm. Hopefully Messi will be entirely concentrated on the game, and not worried about the threats he’s recently received from Canelo Alvarez.