Argentina's Lionel Messi in action against Colombia in a 2018 World Cup qualifier in San Juan.
Argentina's Lionel Messi in action against Colombia in a 2018 World Cup qualifier in San Juan. NICOLAS AGUILERA

Messi and co boycott media over marijuana claims

FOOTBALL: Lionel Messi is leading a boycott of the media by he and his Argentina teammates because of accusations made against striker Ezequiel Lavezzi.

The boycott stems in part from a report by an Argentine journalist that Lavezzi smoked marijuana during the team's training camp.

Lavezzi has said he would "initiate legal proceedings” against the reporter.

"We're here to say that we are not going to speak any more with the press,” Messi said after Tuesday's 3-0 win over Colombia in World Cup qualifying.

"We receive a lot of accusations, a lot of disrespect. The accusations against Lavezzi are very serious.”

The superstar Barcelona forward did not say how long the boycott would last, but did apologise to some reporters.

"We're sorry it has to be this way, but there is no other option,” Messi said, flanked by teammates and holding a microphone.

"I know many of you aren't like that, not disrespectful. You can lose or win, you can have an opinion that we played well, or we played poorly - whatever takes place on the field - but not entering into personal accusations like this.”


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