Barcelona ace Lionel Messi set to be handed Argentina captaincy by Alejandro Sabella - report

National coach is reportedly considering taking armband off Javier Mascherano and handing it to his star man after being impressed by his maturity and commitment
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New Argentina coach Alejandro Sabella reportedly wants to elect Lionel Messi as his new captain, after meeting the Barcelona phenomenon on Friday to discuss national team affairs.

According to Ole, the 55-year-old was delighted by the forward's attitude and approach during their meeting which have convinced the tactician that his prized asset must be at the forefront of his vision whilst at the helm.

Messi is said to have displayed maturity, commitment and character to Sabella, which has given the coach food for thought as he is now considering giving him the armband currently belonging to Barcelona team-mate Javier Mascherano.

It would not be the first time that the forward has assumed the captaincy. Former Seleccion coach Diego Maradona handed him the role against Greece during last year's World Cup in South Africa.

The meeting in Catalunya reportedly turned into dinner between the pair, at which Mascherano was also present. Issues that were brought to the table included the team's underachievement at this year's Copa America and Sabella's ideas for the national team.

The new coach had been in Lisbon earlier in the week, where he met with other players under consideration for his first Argentina squad. This included Benfica trio Nicolas Gaitan, Ezequiel Garay and Enzo Perez as well as Fabio Rinaudo of Sporting Lisbon.

Following his Barcelona trip, Sabella now finds himself in Madrid, where he will meet with Angel Di Maria, Fernando Gago and Gonzalo Higuain and witness the first leg of the Supercopa between Real Madrid and Barcelona on August 14.