Argentina coach Diego Maradona has revealed how impressed he has been with Lionel Messi since the Barcelona forward joined up with his squad for the World Cup and praised his display against Nigeria this past weekend.
"I want to say one thing about Lionel. I see him so relaxed. He’s so mature, I feel great," Maradona said at a pre-match press conference.
"He needed a match like the one he had against Nigeria. He showed leadership, playing well with his team-mates, especially when the match was close in the second half.
"That's when we saw the best version of Messi, he was never shy. He kept on trying to play. Him, together with [Carlos] Tevez, took away Nigeria's confidence in the second half."
Argentina face South Korea in their second Group B fixture on Thursday and Maradona revealed he was looking forward to the prospect of facing a less physical side.
"Every time we collided with a Nigerian player it was like hitting a wall," he added.
"Whereas against South Korea we won't suffer from it as much, we will be more equal with them in that regard."