Lionel Messi praises Bale and Rooney at boot launch - video
Premier League stars are 'great' says Messi - but what about his 'mantra' on diving and respect?
LIONEL MESSI may only be 25 but the man almost universally regarded as the world's greatest footballer now has a museum dedicated to his achievements and has even unveiled his own football 'philosophy'.
The exhibition of Messi memorabilia in Barcelona is the latest marketing ploy from sponsors Adidas, designed to promote his new boot, the 'adizero f50'.
The month-long pop-up display features his four Ballon d'Or awards along with his boots, shirts, match balls and other trophies. A new ad has also been released featuring the Team Messi 'mantra', which involves pleas for players not to dive and to show respect to each other and referees.
However, the Daily Mail, which attended the press launch, was more interested in his opinions of Gareth Bale and Wayne Rooney than his range of branded products. It breathlessly reported that, when asked, Messi described the pair as "great players".
The paper then raised the prospect of an unlikely Barcelona transfer coup by reporting that Messi's opinion would "not go unnoticed" at Spurs and Manchester United. It quoted the Argentine as saying: "I have to be careful because I can’t see them leaving their teams soon. But of course I want to play with the best players."
The Mail did not ask what Messi thought of Bale's reputation for diving or Rooney's often confrontational approach.