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Diego Maradona has admitted Lionel Messi is “the best football player today”, though hopes to see Barcelona defeated by Napoli.
The Catalan giants will face the Serie A side for the Champions League last-16 first leg at Stadio San Paolo tonight.
Once managing Argentina national team, Maradona worked with Messi. Speaking on the forward, he told Il Mattino: “He must continue his career and his life knowing that he is the best football player today. I enjoyed watching Leo with Argentina in every game.”
However, the 59-year-old is hoping to see his former side Napoli winning in the upcoming Champions League clash.
“I have given everything to Napoli and Napoli has given everything to me showing its affection. They [the 1980s] were great years for the team and for Argentina. We managed to win the [Serie A] championship, the UEFA Cup and the World Cup,” he added.
Maradona hopes Napoli will “surprise [everyone] and give joy to their people” by leaving Barcelona out of competition.