GOAL 

Lionel Messi played down fears of illness after vomiting on the pitch as Argentina played out a dour goalless draw with Romania on Wednesday. The Barcelona superstar threw up just eight minutes into the contest in Bucharest but insisted afterwards there was no need for alarm.

“It's something that always happens, it happened to me several times at my club so there's nothing to worry about,” Messi told TyC Sports.

Messi famously vomited in the Spanish Supercopa against Real Madrid in 2011 and Thursday’s repeat may go some way to explaining a below-par display from the four-time Ballon d'Or winner in a low-key encounter.

Indeed, the visitors could even have lost the game had Alexandru Maxim’s first-half goal been allowed to stand.

Maxim fired home at the back post after collecting a superb cross from Alexandru Matel 10 minutes before half-time, only for referee Gianluca Rocchi to rule the effort out after his assistant inexplicably flagged for an infringement.

“I don't like putting up excuses but the pitch conditions didn't help,” added Messi. “The truth is that it was hard to stop the ball in less than two or three touches, we did what we could.

“In the second half we played better than in the first. Now, we still have two games to prepare and keep on growing to make it in a perfect condition to Brazil.”

Messi played down any concerns the Albiceleste fans may have about Alejandro Sabella's star-studded squad.

“It was a long time since we last saw each other,” explained Messi. “The truth is that the group is phenomenal as always. We're everyday more united, with our heads in the future, in the World Cup.

“We're fine, it's a pity we can't take too many conclusions from today's game.”