Lionel Messi Sets The Benchmark In Argentina Training As Team Prepare For World Cup Opener Against Iceland

Lionel Messi set the benchmark in training on Friday with a powerful surge for an aerial ball

Lionel Messi is keen to leap straight into what could be his final World Cup and get Argentina off to a powerful start in Group D when they kick their tournament off against Iceland.

The Albiceleste superstar went about setting the benchmark in training on Friday, as the team put in one of their final training sessions before the opener.

Messi was seen leaping through the air to control the ball during a small-sided possession drill, getting head and shoulders above his team-mates despite his diminutive 5ft 5′ stature.

Messi keeps his eyes on the prize as he goes in for a header during the practice session

Players worked on fitness and stamina before heading into work with the football

The nation's talisman leaped straight into the action to give his all straight from the off

The Barcelona man appears determined to take Russia by force, after perhaps accepting this could be his last opportunity to deliver World Cup glory for his country and add to his legacy as one of the game’s greatest ever.

Messi took to training with a host of his superstar team-mates in Moscow on Friday, joking around with close friend Sergio Aguero before getting down to business.

Argentina are the favourites to triumph in Group D, which aside Iceland also comprises Nigeria and Croatia.

The South Americans are eager to replicate their success from the last World Cup, where they travelled all the way to the final before losing to Germany in added time.

The heartbreak meant Messi was forced to wait longer still to finally win a major trophy with his nation.

Iceland will enter the fixture with an air of confidence, following their impressive run on the international scene at Euro 2016.


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