Brazil president Jair Bolsonaro has made a public response to Lionel Messi's criticism of the Copa America recently held in the country.
The five-time winner of the Golden Ball stated that Copa America had been planned so that the Brazilians would win the tournament.
As reported by Marca, on hearing Messi's comments, Bolsonaro said, "What did Messi say? Ahhh, yes, that's a show for the football players."
After the tournament's semi-final against Brazil, in which Argentina lost 2-0, Messi criticised the referee for not making use of the replay system, VAR.
According to Globo Esporte, the VAR communication problems were connected to a visit by Brazil's president. Jair Bolsonaro arrived at the stadium to watch the game and his security’s radio frequencies coincided with the VAR team, used by the referees.
However, with those problems fixed before the game the responsibility for the non-review of the penalty decision still rested with referee Roddy Zambrano and Leodan Gonzalez, who led the video review team.
The Barcelona superstar also accused CONMEBOL of corruption, for which he may be given a two-year ban on playing with the national team. Messi also called on South American authorities to "analyse" the use of the video assistant referee to avoid a repeat of the incident.
Additionally, many former footballers commented that Copa America was prepared for Brazil to win.