New Jersey: Soon after guiding Chile to their second straight Copa America Centenario title, manager Juan Antonio Pizzi has lavished praise on Argentina star striker Lionel Messi and described him as the `best player of all time`.Pizzi`s announcement came right around the same time when Messi was announcing his retirement from international football following his country`s 2-4 defeat at the hands of Chile in Copa America.
Although Messi missed his crucial penalty kick in the final match, Pizzi`s opinion about his fellow countryman remains the same.Admitting that he admires Messi, Pizzi believes it is very difficult to match the numbers that the Barcelona striker achieved during his career."Because I know what it means to value certain numbers and Messi`s numbers are unmatched, and I don`t think they will ever be matched because it`s impossible for a player to find the things that Messi finds," Pizzi was quoted as saying by goal.com.
The Chile coach also praised his side`s successful defense of the Copa America title and said that his players helped them to become a strong national team, which can compete even with the best.After both sides failed to score goal in regulation time and extra time, Chile and Argentina were taken to penalties to decide the winner.Messi, who was making his 112th appearance for the national side, missed his spot-kick in the dramatic penalty shootout as Argentina lost their fourth major final in nine years.
Before two successive Copa America final defeats by Chile, Argentina were beaten 1-0 in the 2014 World Cup final by Germany. Messi`s side had also suffered defeat against Brazil in the 2007 Copa America final.