Former Argentina coach, Jorge Sampaoli, has broken his silence on Argentina’s failed 2018 World Cup campaign, stating that nobody felt the pain of premature exit harder than captain Lionel Messi.

The Albiceleste crashed out in the last-16 at the hands of eventual winners France, going down 4-3 after squeezing through the group stages with a last-minute win over Nigeria.

Sampaoli was subsequently dismissed at the end of the tournament, amid reports that he had lost control of the dressing room in Russia and that a senior group of players led by Messi and Javier Mascherano took the initiative.

Messi was just one of Argentina’s stars who was well under-par at the World Cup, and Sampaoli affirmed that elimination hit him hard.

“Coaching Messi was incredible, just to see him so committed, suffering so much when we did not win,” Sampaoli told Marca in his first interview since leaving the national team.

“The best player in history was very committed. Leo…