2018 will not be the year that we finally see Lionel Messi lift the World Cup, but in truth, ever since Argentina lost the 2014 final, the prospect of the Barcelona star getting his hands on football's biggest prize was looking pretty unlikely.
Messi's a wonderful player, and while there are some who argue he needed to win the World Cup to truly go down as the greatest of all time, he's still done more than enough throughout his career to merit a place among the pantheon of historic footballing legends.
Now, at the age of 31, Messi has got to be thinking about calling it quits from the international scene. He did briefly retire a couple of years ago, only to eventually change his mind. From 2014-16, he made it to three finals with Argentina, losing all three of them. Had those games gone differently, Messi could have added a World Cup and two Copa América titles to his bulging trophy cabinet, but it just wasn't meant to be.
This year, despite moments of brilliance, he didn't really get going and heads home having once again failed to score in a World Cup knockout game. It's a shame for his career to end on such a sour note, but it might be time for Messi to announce his retirement from Argentina once again and stick to it this time.