Looking at Argentina’s attempts to qualify for the 2018 World Cup it would be easy to think their players don’t care.
A goalless draw against Peru means Argentina are now 6th in qualifying and face an uphill battle to be in Russia.
But you only need to look at Fernando Gago’s performance last night to know how much playing for their country means to Lionel Messi and co.
Gago, making his first international appearance since 2015, had only been on the pitch for six minutes when he went down injured.
While the reaction of his team-mates, who were visibly upset, hinted at a nasty injury, Gago did everything he could to stay on the pitch.
The Boca Juniors midfielder, playing in front of his home crowd, even demanded the physios to strap his knee up and get him back on.
But Gago was unable to continue and had to be withdrawn for Enzo Perez while fighting back tears.
After the game Argentina confirmed that Gago had torn his ACL and MCL in his right knee and now faces at least six months out.
All of which makes it even more remarkable that he even attempted to get back on the pitch.
There are some things the magic sponge just won’t fix.