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The Germany legend was full of praise for the Argentina international and stated that he is of the opinion that the Catalan giants are still the best club on the planet

Bayer Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voller has heaped praise on Barcelona star Lionel Messi, saying that the Argentine is at the same level as Pele and Diego Maradona.

The diminutive attacker put in a world class display in Wednesday's 7-1 demolition of Leverkusen in the Champions League, becoming the first player in the competition to score five goals in a single match.

"It is not just about his five goals today, he has been showing this already for years," Voller told SAT.1. "He is now in a region with Pele and Maradona.

"Sometimes, you have to stand on Messi's feet to get a grip on the match."

Voller was also lost for words to describe Barcelona and admitted that Leverkusen were helpless at Camp Nou in the second leg of their last-16 tie that they lost 10-2 on aggregate.

"Barca shot us down in the second half," he noted. "They defend well and have the right approach.

"They may be 10 points behind Real Madrid in La Liga, but they are the best team in the world at the moment."

Between November and February, Goal.com published 10 exclusive extracts from Graham Hunter's highly anticipated new book, 'Barca: The Making of the Greatest Team in the World'. Click here to read all 10 extracts. Don't miss it!

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