Argentina general manager Jorge Burruchaga believes it is "impossible" that Lionel Messi will walk away from international football on a permanent basis.
Messi is the Albiceleste's all-time top scorer with 65 goals, but is currently on leave from international duty following disappointment at the 2018 World Cup.
Interim coach Lionel Scaloni has so far picked three squads without the team captain, as well as resting a host of familiar faces in favour of blooding younger talent.
The Barcelona man has remained tight-lipped on his future with Argentina, refusing to put a timeframe on his return nor whether he will be available for next year's Copa America.
But according to Burruchaga, there is no prospect of him quitting the Albiceleste whatsoever.
"No date is scheduled right now for the return of Messi and he will not be back before the end of the year," Burruchaga, who scored Argentina's winning goal in the 1986 World Cup final against Germany, told Goal.
"But it's impossible that he will not be in the national team again. This is transitory.
"I'm sure that next year, he will be in the Argentine national team again."
Messi made his debut for Argentina at age 17, and has gone on to pick up 128 caps and represent his country at three World Cups.
The Albiceleste, however, have failed to win a major honour with the star in their team, despite reaching the World Cup final in 2014 as well as Copa America deciders in 2007, 2015 and 2016.
That last final defeat to Chile, after a penalty shoot-out during which Messi failed from the spot, prompted a short-lived retirement from the tearful captain, who later reversed his decision to help his nation qualify for their ill-fated attempt at glory in Russia under coach Jorge Sampaoli.