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Javier Mascherano talks Messi, Guardiola and his time at Barcelona

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Photo via Imago

Former Barcelona defender Javier Mascherano sat down for an interview with TYC Sports, where he discussed all things Argentina, his time at some of the biggest clubs in the world such as Barcelona and Liverpool, as well as Lionel Messi and his dynamic with Pep Guardiola.

El Jefecito fast became a beloved figure among the Barcelona faithful after arriving from England and his warrior’s spirit and immense ability saw him rise to the very highest levels in world football. The Argentine did say, however, that his move to Barcelona was thanks in no small part to Lionel Messi.

“Messi helped in Barcelona signing me. Pep didn’t want to know anything. Guardiola was the best coach I had in my career. I told him I was going to Barcelona to learn,” said Javier Mascherano.

Guardiola played a major role in Mascherano’s development after he came to Spain, and the former defender shared an interesting anecdote about one of their early interactions as well: “The first thing Pep told me when I joined Barcelona was: ‘You know you’re coming here to be a substitute, no’?”

The 36-year old also opened up about the heartbreaks he and subsequently Lionel Messi suffered with the Argentine national team, the most prominent of which he said was the 2014 World Cup final in Brazil and then the 2016 Copa America.

Mascherano then commented on Messi’s future at Barcelona, which remains highly unclear at the moment: “From what I saw, Messi is the best, the most complete. I hope he ends his career with Barcelona.”

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