Batistuta: Messi would have driven me to playing polo!

The Argentina great confesses that he would have struggled to hit the same high standards in his career had he played in the same generation as the Barcelona star
Gabriel Batistuta has joked that he might have been forced to consider a change of sport if he'd had Lionel Messi for competition in the Argentina national team.

Batistuta holds the nation's record for most international goals, with 56 in 78 appearances- while Messi has 32 despite earning one more cap for his country.

However, Batistuta sought to pay tribute to his compatriot, suggesting his talent was so great that it could have dulled the spark of his own career.

"I do not know how I would have got on with Messi," the 44 year-old told "I'm sure it would have meant fewer goals for me. I think that I would have gone off to play polo before long!"

The former forward, who enjoyed club success with Fiorentina and Roma in his playing days, also gave his thoughts on the Albiceleste's chances at World Cup 2014 in Brazil and the selection of players for the national side.

"There is no striker of my type [in Argentina] and I don't think people are looking for one," he added.

"A coach with no previous experience in the Netherlands gave Marco van Basten his debut and it was the same for Jurgen Klinsmann in Germany. But in Argentina that is not as likely to happen.

"If we don't win the next World Cup, it will be a while before we have a better chance. But we were in the same position in 2002. Believe me, that was Argentina's worst ever World Cup [a group-stage exit].

"There's little logic in football."