By 90Min
October 05, 2017

Former Barcelona maestro Xavi Hernandez has spoken of Lionel Messi's hunger for the ball during his playing days with the little Argentine, and claims the five-time Ballon d'Or winner starts to get frustrated if he's not involved in play.

Xavi, who won three Champions League trophies alongside Messi, was speaking ahead of Argentina's crucial World Cup qualifier with Peru in Buenos Aires. 

Argentina are currently fifth in the qualifying group which fortunately is a play-off place. However, the two-time World Cup winners are in serious danger not making it to Russia next summer.

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Speaking to El Mundo, Xavi said: "Barcelona and the Argentine national team cannot afford to allow 10 minutes to pass in a game without Leo Messi touching the ball.


"Leo Messi has to be involved in the game. He has to be where things are happening, where the ball is. In addition, he's going to get pissed off. If he doesn't touch the ball for five minutes, you have to bring him to where the ball is.

"He has to participate in the play."

Lionel Messi, who is Argentina's all time record goalscorer, has started the season in typical fashion, scoring 11 goals in seven league games. 

The Albiceleste captain will be hoping to lead his team to qualification, especially after the heartbreak he suffered following the World Cup final defeat to Germany in 2014.

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