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Chinese city cancels Argentina soccer match after Messi backlash in Hong Kong

·1 min

A city in mainland China has called off plans to host a soccer match featuring Argentina’s national team following backlash against star player Lionel Messi. Messi faced criticism after remaining on the bench during an exhibition game in Hong Kong. Despite claims of an injury preventing him from playing, Chinese fans expressed their displeasure and demanded refunds. In light of this, the Hangzhou Sports Bureau canceled a friendly match between Argentina and Nigeria, citing “immature conditions.” This comes as a blow to Messi’s popularity in one of the world’s most lucrative sports markets.