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Despite trying everything in the book, Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli said he was unable to bring out the best in talisman Lionel Messi whose last chance for World Cup glory nearly certainly ended with Saturday's defeat to France.

The three-storey portrait of Ronaldo was painted on a building behind the Ramada Hotel to welcome the five-times World Player of the Year when Portugal played in the capital of Tatarstan in the 2017 Confederations Cup.

They came closest with this squad in 2014, when they lost in the final of the last World Cup, and in the Copas America in 2015 and 2016. "Leo?" newly-painted above the Ronaldo portrait.

Argentine FA bosses were hoping that their boss would resign following the 4-3 World Cup exit at the hands of France on Saturday after a campaign that was wrecked by dressing room unrest.

Russian Federation came into the tournament derided by their own supporters after a string of defeats in warmup matches but they thrashed Saudi Arabia 5-0 in their opener and then swept aside Egypt 3-1, making even their own sceptical public believe. Many football fans, this news annoyed, because without these two geniuses the world Cup could be not such interesting and entertaining.

For 13 long years, he was the undisputed first-choice goal-keeper but couldn't guide his team to World Cup glory.

"From Messi's point of view, maybe that's it. Ronaldo seems to want to go on forever".

The former Boca Juniors and Napoli player managed Argentina at the 2010 World Cup, where his team were beaten 4-0 by Germany at the quarter-final stage.

The fallout from the defeat to France has already begun, with Javier Mascherano the first of many players expected to retire from worldwide football.

"Yes, and I would do it [coach the team] for free", Maradona said on a Venezuelan TV show, Reuters reported.

Spain midfielder David Silva said his side will be treating the match "as if we were playing against Brazil".

Messi took part in his fourth FIFA World Cup in Russian Federation, but like many others, the Blaugrana man has gone home disappointed.

The former Chile boss lost control of the dressing room, with Lionel Messi reportedly making numerous tactical decisions by the end of the tournament, and the side never played to their attacking potential.

Didier Deschamps knows the quality of the 27-year-old and considers him to be "the leader of the French attack", but as such expects more from him.


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