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Argentina team doctor Daniel Martinez has revealed thatLionel Messi was suffering from “intense pain” in his lower back when being taken off the field against Honduras.

The Barcelona ace, who has found the net 42 times in 51 games for club and country this term, was withdrawn after being caught by a knee in the second half of the 1-0 win to be replaced by Ever Banega.

Messi was able to fly back to his hometown of Rosario following the match, but it is not yet known whether he will be fit enough to take part in the upcoming Copa America tournament.

“We did a scan on him at the stadium and then took him to do an ultrasound and an MRI,” Martinez told La Nacion. “Thankfully we didn’t find any bone damage or fractures but there is a large contusion.

“There’s inflammation around the back of his ribcage and in the soft tissue. The pain is making it difficult to move normally, to turn, to cough.

“He was in intense pain on the field. The most worrying thing was the pain because, as I said, it was intense. Sometimes being warm means you don’t feel anything but here was the complete opposite – Messi was in a lot of pain.”

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