Juan Román Riquelme has heaped praise on Lionel Messi while talking to TyCSports in Argentina. The legendary footballer claims the Paris Saint-Germain star has reinvented himself over time and is a genius on the pitch.
The world was talking about Lionel Messi yesterday (24 June) as it was his 35th birthday. Riquelme shares his birthday with the former Barcelona star and turned 44 yesterday, but it went under the radar as the majority focused on the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner.
Speaking on TyCSports yesterday, Riquelme had nothing but good things to say about Messi in the interview. The Argentine, who was lucky enough to play alongside the PSG star and the legendary Diego Maradona, lavished praise on the 35-year-old. He said:
“Today I called him to wish for his birthday. Messi has reinvented himself over time. He is a genius playing ball and in the head because all he wants is to compete.
“I was lucky to play with Messi and Maradona. Playing with Messi was fabulous, I love him very much, we talk quite often. He is fond of me, time passed so quickly.”
Lionel Messi is a big fan of Argentina legend Riquelme
Josep Maria Minguella, the agent who took Lionel Messi to Barcelona, has revealed that the 35-year-old was a massive fan of Riquelme and saw him as an idol.
He was quoted by OneFootball saying:
“Sometimes he would come to my home when we had a barbecue. I remember one of those barbecues. Riquelme, Fábio Rochemback, Thiago Motta, and some other players were all there. We did it in the late afternoon. I could see Messi sitting at the back of a table.
“From there he looked beneath that famous hair at Riquelme. Messi looked at Riquelme as if he were Jesus Christ. For Messi, Riquelme was the’ 10′, left-footed, played in the first-team of Barca and was his great idol. But he only looked at him because Leo was very quiet and it was difficult for him to converse with his idol.”
Messi is determined to put his debut season at PSG behind him and get back to his best when the next season begins.
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