Brighton & Hove Albion’s Alexis Mac Allister has been one of the young players to announce his name to the football world at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, playing alongside Lionel Messi on the Argentina national team.
Former Brighton & Hove Albion striker Warren Aspinall believes Messi is behind Mac Allister’s breakout tournament.
Aspinall claims that having the 23-year-old playing alongside the Paris Saint-Germain star allows him to improve as a player by learning from the likes of Messi.
“Thankfully [Mac Allister] signed his new contract just before going out to the World Cup as he is looking just as good out there or even better than he was for Brighton before he left,” Aspinall told the Albion Unlimited podcast. “I think playing with better players, no disrespect to the Brighton players, but you can learn a lot from [Lionel] Messi and players like that.
“You don’t need to charge around the pitch; sometimes Messi is standing still most of the game, then the bursts of pace and the spaces he can pick up is tremendous. They are both having a great World Cup and I am glad they are both still there and their fans – what an atmosphere they can create. It is wonderful to have them there.”
The young midfielder scored for Argentina in their 2-0 victory over Poland in the group stage and could start their World Cup quarterfinal against the Netherlands. It will be interesting to see if Mac Allister can carry this momentum back to his club football performance.
Additionally, learning under Messi is crucial, considering the Brighton & Hove Albion star will likely be part of the new generation of players that lead Argentina in a post-Messi national team heading into the 2026 World Cup.