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The Argentine has revealed that he has an excellent relationship with his compatriot and is happy to play in defence for the European champions

Barcelona midfielder Javier Mascherano has expressed his gratitude toward team-mate Lionel Messi for recommending him to join the Catalans in the summer of 2010.

The Argentina international left Liverpool for the Camp Nou club last year and won La Liga and the Champions League in his first season with Barca.

"My relationship with Leo is spectacular. I'll be grateful for the rest of my life that he recommended me to join Barcelona," Mascherano was quoted as saying by Marca.

The 27-year-old then went on to discuss his position as defender at Barcelona and voiced his satisfaction with being part of the Spanish champions.

"The coach believed in me as centre-back and I try to do the best I can. With the support of the coach, everything is easier.

"I feel proud to be part of a group that never gets tired of winning. I've never been at a team like this."

Mascherano has a contract with Barcelona until the summer of 2014.