Football icon Diego Maradona has claimed that current Argentina skipper Lionel Messi does not have the character to be a leader. Maradona was caught on microphone talking about the Barcelona forward with Brazil legend Pele at an event in Paris on Friday.
“He’s a really good person, but he has no personality,” Maradona was caught as saying to Pele.
“He (Messi) lacks (the) character to be a leader,” said Maradona.
Pele then responded: “Ah, I get it, he’s not like we were back in the days. In the 70s, we (Brazil) had really good players like Rivellino, Gerson, and Tostao.”
“Not like Argentina now, which depends only on Messi. He (Maradona) is saying that Messi is a good player, there’s no doubt about it, but he has no personality.
In his illustrious career, Messi has not been able to replicate his club form when he turned up for his country. The 28-year-old has twice lost in the Copa America final and once in the World Cup final. A gold medal at the 2008 Olympics remains his most significant international honour. Messi missed Argentina’s opening game of the 2016 Copa America Centenario, a 2-1 win over title holders Chile, due to a back injury.