Javier Mascherano believes there is no point making comparisons between his Argentina and Barcelona team-mate Lionel Messi, and Diego Maradona.
The midfielder has played alongside Messi for many years for the national side, and for the past two seasons has also played his club football with the 25-year-old after completing a move to Camp Nou from Liverpool in 2010.
When asked about whether Messi rates alongside Argentina legend Maradona, Mascherano was quick to dismiss such comparisons.
''There is no need to compare Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi'', the former Corinthians player told Goal.com, ''Maradona was the greatest striker of his era and Messi is currently the best footballer in the world.
''He [Messi] has won the 'Ballon d'O'r three times. The Argentines are very proud of him because he is the first player to achieve this.
Mascherano also spoke of how lucky he feels to play alongside Messi for both club and country: "For me it's an honor to play with Lionel Messi. I spend every day with him. In the future I'll remember that I played was with one of the best players of all time."
Barcelona kicks off its Liga campaign at home to Real Sociedad on August 19.
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- Diego Maradona