Matthäus: “Messi is the player of the millennium”

DOHA, Dec. 18 (dpa/EP) –

Former German international Lothar Matthäus has assured that Leo Messi is the “player of the millennium” and that he expects the Argentine star to win the World Cup final against France.

“Messi gave me and all the football fans a lot of joy in the last 17 or 18 years with his style of play,” he said this Sunday in statements to the newspaper ‘Bild am Sonntag’.

In his fifth World Cup participation, the Argentine will surpass with 26 appearances the record that Matthäus held until now, with 25 participations in a final phase. According to Matthäus, among the World Cup winners is also the host Qatar.

“I talked to a lot of ordinary people to get my own impression. Everywhere I experienced friendliness, goodwill, openness and tolerance towards the Western way of life,” Matthäus said.

“There are certainly justified points of criticism, but when I see how extremely negative the information about Qatar tends to be in Germany, I feel like I’m in another country,” he added.

On the other hand, he affirmed that the German team is among the losers of the World Cup. In his opinion, in addition to sports errors, other issues were mixed. “Our team was exploited for political purposes and the DFB (German Football Federation) allowed it,” he stressed.