Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter has revealed what Lionel Messi said to himself after Argentina's loss to Germany in the 2014 World Cup final.
Messi was awarded the Golden Ball as the best player of the tournament in Brazil, but his team slumped to a 1-0 defeat after extra time in the decider.
The Barcelona star was given his prize immediately after the game at the Maracana in Rio de Janeiro and Blatter said the 28-year-old acknowledged he had fallen short from a team perspective again.
"Messi was talking to himself," Blatter told Argentine publication La Nacion.
"He said to himself over and over again: 'The best but not the champion.'"
A five-time Ballon d'Or winner, Messi can add a major continental trophy to his collection with Argentina into the Copa America Centenario quarter-finals in the United States.