Copa America final: Messi and Neymar warn teammates, Brazilian star slams fans for backing Argentina

Copa America final: Brazil vs Argentina - Lionel Messi and Neymar warn teammates about each other, Brazilian star slams fans who are backing Argentina and Messi.

Lionel Messi of Argentina and Neymar of Brazil
Lionel Messi of Argentina and Neymar of Brazil / IMAGO

Messi sends Neymar warning to teammates

Brazil take on Argentina in the final of the Copa America on Sunday, and Lionel Messi will be looking to win his first major international trophy.

However, the Barcelona superstar is reluctant to get carried away. He has already warned his teammates that Brazil will be tough opposition, especially with Neymar at their disposal.

Messi has played with Neymar at club level, and he knows the Brazilian all too well.

Argentina have done reasonably well defensively, but they will have to be at their best to keep out the likes of Neymar on Sunday morning.

He said: “Brazil, with Neymar, are going to be very difficult. We know his potential, what he does individually.”

Neymar puts friendship on the line

Meanwhile, Neymar has also hailed the quality of the opposition, and he revealed that Messi is the best player he has ever seen and that the Argentine is a great friend.

However, when the two teams meet on Sunday, Neymar and Messi will be rivals, and he claimed that their friendship would be on the line.

“Messi is, as I’ve always said, the best player I’ve ever seen play, and he’s a great friend, but now we’re in a final, we’re rivals,” said Neymar, as cited by the Mirror.

“I want to win, and I really want to win this title, which would be my first Copa America.

“Messi has been looking for his first title with the national team for many years, and every time we [Brazil] are not present at the tournament, I cheered for him. That’s what I’ve been cheering for in the 2014 World Cup final when he faced Germany.

“Now Brazil is in dispute, so our friendship is on the line. The respect between us is still great, but only one can win.

“When you’re friends with someone, it’s hard to forget the friendship you have – but for example, when you play video games with a friend, you want to beat him anyway. It’ll be the same thing on Saturday.”

Neymar furious with fans

The Brazilian superstar also hit out at the fans who are supporting Argentina in the Copa America final.

According to reports, some locals hope to see Lionel Messi lifting his first major international trophy, which has prompted a furious reaction from the Brazilian superstar.

Neymar sent out an angry message on Instagram stating: “I am Brazilian with a lot of pride and love. My dream was always to be in the Brazil national team and hear the fans singing. I never attacked, nor will attack [Brazil] if they are competing for something, whether that is in sport, a modelling competition, the Oscars. If it’s Brazil, I am Brazil, and who is Brazilian and does it differently? It’s fine. I will respect it, but go to [hell]… those who are in opposition.”