Keeping Lionel Messi quiet may be the most difficult task you can ask of a defender. The Argentine is absolutely unstoppable when he is in the mood, and he has made many an opposition player feel helpless over the years.
Restricting his impact throughout an entire 90 minutes requires an incredible amount of concentration, so you can only imagine how much harder it would be if you weren't exactly feeling the best.
Just ask Marquinhos. The defender was given the job of marking Messi during the recent Copa America semi-final between Brazil and Argentina, a game which the host nation would win 2-0. As the scoreline suggests, he did quite a good job of it.
Despite this, he would be withdrawn from the game in the 64th minute. Now we know why.
The player has revealed that he was suffering from a virus on the day of the match, which resulted in diarrhoea.
Marquinhos ain’t any @GaryLineker :
“The day I played with Argentina and marked Messi, I had a virus and diarrhoea all day long.
Resisted during the game, but couldn’t hold anymore and at 64’ that’s what I was changed”
— Tancredi Palmeri (@tancredipalmeri) July 6, 2019
The Gary Lineker line is of course a reference to the famous incident from the 1990 World Cup, when the England striker relieved himself on the pitch during a game against Ireland.
To be fair to him, he has poked fun at himself a number of times on social media in recent years. He was always going to have something to say about this one.
No Shit Sherlock. https://t.co/YeGJlJ9Ub8
— Gary Lineker 💙💛 (@GaryLineker) July 6, 2019
Brazil will take on Peru in the Copa America final tomorrow night hoping to win the tournament for the first time since 2007. We assume Marquinhos has been on the pepto-bismal in preparation.