BARRIO – Lionel Messi is set to tie a historic record set by Diego Maradona when Argentina take the field against Mexico late today.
Messi, 35, will play in his 21st FIFA World Cup contest, equalizing the record set by Maradona for most World Cup games played by an Argentine player.
Maradona, who died two years ago [Nov. 25], reached the historic mark in four World Cups, one less than Messi.
Messi is already the Argentine player with the most international caps ever, but the World Cup is an entirely different ballgame.
If Messi scores against Mexico, he’ll be tied with Maradona and Guillermo Stabile for the second-most goals scored in World Cups by an Argentine.
Gabriel Batistuta leads that list with 10 goals, which Messi could also reach should Argentina continue past the Group Stage.
These records will mean nothing to Messi if Argentina fails to win the World Cup.