Messi, Neymar showdown not to be

2015-06-24 06:00

THE showdown expected between Barcelona stars and teammates Lionel Messi and Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior will never happen.

This comes after Neymar was sent off at the end of Brazil’s Copa game against Colombia on Wednesday (17/06) when he appeared to headbutt an opposing player. The captain’s suspension ruled Neymar out of the rest of the Copa America tournament – leaving teammate and Argentinian Messi a lone star to shine for the remainder of the competition.

The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) said Neymar left the team in Santiago on Monday (22/06), adding that it would not appeal against the four-match ban on captain Neymar.

A showdown was expected between Messi and Neymar, with their teams having advanced to the next stage of the championship.

After they had teamed up to win a historic treble for Barcelona, the two star players were expected to find themselves on opposite ends in their quest to lead their native countries to Copa America glory.

They were expected to spearhead their countries’ quest for continental supremacy in the 44th edition of the Copa America, which could personally have see them get a fourth title of the year.

Messi will lead Argentina while Brazil will feel Neymar’s absence. Argentina and Brazil are the favourites going into this year’s South American football showpiece. It is being broadcast live on SuperSport on SS3 HD and Maximo.

With decorated club careers, but only a solitary Confederations Cup title to show in over 150 combined senior appearances for their countries, both Messi and Neymar are desperate for international success.

Even though the two powerhouses Argentina and Brazil are the favourites, the tournament can be unpredictable.

Four years ago Messi and Neymar were powerless to stop a rampant Uruguay, led by Luis Suarez and Diego Forlan, romping to the title

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