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We are not going to the World Cup as favourites: Messi

Buenos Aires:Star forward Lionel Messi feels Argentina are not going to the World Cup in Russia as favourites but have players in their arsenal who can “fight against anyone”.

Messi netted a hattrick as Argentina brushed aside Haiti 4-0 in a friendly at La Bombonera leading up to the World Cup.

The FC Barcelona star broke the deadlock by slotting home a penalty before adding two more goals in eight second-half minutes.

Messi then turned provider, setting up substitute Sergio Aguero for the final goal with 21 minutes remaining.

“I want to thank all the fans that supported us tonight,” Messi told TyC Sports after the match.

“More than the result we were able to say goodbye to our fans and enjoy their support. I really appreciate all the love from our fans.

“We are not going to the World Cup as favourites but we are a great team with players ready to fight against anyone.

This group of players have been together for a long time and we really want to go for an important title.

“We are going to Russia with all the enthusiasm. We will put all what we have on the field as our fans always ask. We are the first ones who want to accomplish the dream of winning the World Cup,” he added.

Argentina are in group D alongwith Croatia, Iceland and Nigeria. Messi has never won a World Cup, coming closest in 2014 but his side lost to Germany in the final.