Maradona lashes out at Messi in greatest player debate

Bayern Munich have won only four of their seven Bundesliga games this season

Bayern Munich have won only four of their seven Bundesliga games this season

Barcelona are reportedly already planning a new contract for forward Lionel Messi, despite the Argentine still having just under three years remaining on his deal.

"He does ask for it on the pitch, but before speaking to teammates he'll go and play the Playstation" Maradona said of Messi in an interview with Mexican programme "La Ultima Palabra".

Seen as one of the leaders in the Argentina camp, Messi captained his country to their second-round exit at the summer tournament.

Leading the country to their last World Cup success in 1986, Maradona has repeatedly criticised Messi for his apparent inability recreate his club form with Barcelona on the worldwide stage.

Messi is a great player but he doesn't get it. "He's Messi when he plays for Barcelona".

Messi, 31, has claimed every possible honour with Barcelona and has won the Fifa World Player of the Year award five times.

Messi has been on the losing side in all four of his finals with Argentina - three in the Copa America and at the 2014 World Cup - and has not scored in four World Cup knockout stages.

The World Cup victor was speaking about the Argentina national team and discussed the No.10, suggesting that Messi's pre-match behaviour should rule him out of a leadership role.

"I wouldn't call him up right now, but never say never", he said.

"You have to take the leadership away for him to be the Messi we want him to be".

Messi wasn't involved as Argentina thrashed Iraq 4-0 on Thursday, with Lautaro Martinez, Roberto Pereyra, German Pezzella and Franco Cervi all on target.

A sterner test will take place on Tuesday when they face Brazil in Saudi Arabia - without Messi.

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