Messi is what Maradona was - Matthaus

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Barcelona and Argentina star Lionel Messi is the modern-day Diego Maradona, according to Germany great Lothar Matthaus.

Messi is regularly compared to countryman Maradona and Brazilian Pele in the discussion over the greatest footballers of all time.

Matthaus, a World Cup and European Championship winner, finds it hard to compare, but can see what Messi is achieving.

"Messi is now what Maradona was 30 years ago," he told Fox Sports.

Matthaus and Maradona had numerous battles, including the 1986 and 1990 World Cup finals.

The 55-year-old said the tournament in Mexico belonged to the Argentina great.

"To speak of Mexico '86, I can make it short and speak only of Maradona," Matthaus said.

"I never saw a player who dominated a World Cup like he did in '86."