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Jorge Sampaoli made an important point about Messi & Ronaldo after Argentina 0-3 Croatia

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It's not been Lionel Messi's World Cup.

The 30-year-old went into this year's competition knowing that this may well be his last chance to win the world's biggest prize.

He has come close before, when he guided his side to the 2014 World Cup final, but he is looking to go one step further this time round.

But it seems his hopes of being a world champion are hanging by a thread.

Argentina drew their opening game against Iceland 1-1, with Messi missing a penalty.

And the Barcelona star could not carry his side to victory against Croatia as they were defeated 3-0.

A lot has been said about the Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo debate already this tournament.

The two are having contrasting fortunes. Ronaldo is an early contender for player of the tournament with four goals, while Messi is staring at an early exit.

Many believe that this is a sign that Ronaldo is the better of the two.

But Argentina's manager, Jorge Sampaoli, made a superb point about the two after Argentina's heavy loss, and he's absolutely spot on.

"I think Cristiano is a great player - you can look at all he has achieved as a player with his club and his country," he said.

TOPSHOT-FBL-ESP-LIGA-BARCELONA-REAL MADRID

"Right now we shouldn't compare these two players. I think because of the reality of the Argentinian squad, it clouds Leo's brilliance.

"Leo is limited because the team doesn't gel ideally with him as it should.

"As coaches, we need to realise these things and try to deal with them and I'm the one that needs to accept it."

You've got to admit, Sampaoli is right.

Argentina are absolutely hopeless.

They're clueless in defence, and their attacking players, while talented, simply cannot function together.

As Sampaoli says, Messi's brilliance is being clouded by the players around him.

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He is forced to do everything on his own, and even though he has carried them before, you simply cannot expect him to do that every game.

While the two are both extremely talented players, it is harsh to compare the two when Messi's talents are being hampered by those around him.

Sampaoli also admitted that he was responsible for his side's poor defeat.

"I beg for the fans' forgiveness," he added. "Especially for those that make the great efforts to travel and see Argentina.

"I am responsible for this result. I was just as dreamy-eyed as any fan and I am hurt by this result. I believe I did the best job I could and I quite simply did not find a way to give them what they wanted."

Do you agree with Sampaoli? Do you think it's unfair to compare the two when Messi is being let down so badly by his teammates? Have your say by leaving a comment below.

Topics:
Football
Iceland Football
Croatia Football
Jorge Sampaoli
Argentina Football
Lionel Messi
Cristiano Ronaldo

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