The Malian forward feels that the Argentine is in a different class to any other player, and hailed Pep Guardiola's Barcelona as the best team in the club's history
The Argentine netted a record-breaking 73 goals in all competitions in 2011-12, and Kanoute feels that triple Ballon d'Or winner is "not a normal player".
"He is not human; he’s from another planet. I’ve played against him several times and he’s incredible – he’s not a normal player," Kanoute stated to Fifa.com.
"In the same way that there’s Barcelona and the rest of the world, there is also Messi and the rest of the Barca players. He does things that only he is capable of doing. He’s exceptional."
Kanoute then voiced his opinion that Pep Guardiola's team are the best Barca side ever.
"In a few years’ time, when I look back and think that I competed against Guardiola’s Barcelona, I’ll realise how lucky I was to have played against the best team Barca ever had.
"I don’t usually like watching football on TV that much, but when Barca are playing I make an exception. The world of football has been lucky to have this team."
Barcelona won the Spanish Supercopa, Uefa Supercup, Club World Cup and Copa del Rey in the 2011-12 campaign.