Emotional Lionel Messi Breaks Down in Tears During Copa America Celebrations
08:28 GMT 10.09.2021 (Updated: 11:43 GMT 10.12.2022)
In July, Lionel Messi ended Argentina's 28-year wait for an international trophy after he led the national team to the Copa America title against Brazil. He was also named best player of the iconic South American tournament for his superb performance, which included four goals and five assists in Rio.
Tears of joy rolled down Lionel Messi's cheeks as he celebrated his country's Copa America success with his teammates and the Argentine public for the first time on Thursday night.
The video of an emotional Messi, in which he is seen crying and wiping away his tears several times, quickly went viral on social media with nearly 2.6 million views and around 111,000 likes in less than 12 hours.
The Argentine skipper's heartfelt moment came after Jorge Sampaoli's side notched up a stunning 3-0 win against Bolivia in their World Cup qualifier, thanks to Messi's sensational hat-trick that also saw him breaking the all-time South American goal record held by Brazilian great Pele.
The 34-year-old football megastar couldn't hold back his tears, as he was so overwhelmed when he and his colleagues held up the Copa America trophy on the pitch.
The moment became all the more sensitive as it was in front of home fans, and ended what was a long and painful wait for an international title.
"I really wanted to be able to enjoy it," Messi said about Argentina's Copa America triumph. "I waited a long time for this, I looked for it and I dreamed of it. It's a unique moment for the way it happened after so much waiting."
"There was no better way to celebrate this than to be here. My mother, my brothers are in the stands… They suffered a lot and today, they are here celebrating. I'm very happy," he added.