Pep Guardiola hails Lionel Messi as 'greatest of all time'

Messi won the World Cup
Messi won the World Cup / LUIS ROBAYO/GettyImages

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has hailed Lionel Messi as the greatest footballer of all time following his 2022 FIFA World Cup triumph.

Messi was instrumental in Argentina's final win on Sunday, scoring two goals and his penalty in the shootout after the game finished 3-3 after extra time to earn his nation their first World Cup since Diego Maradona's 1986 team achieved the same feat.

The World Cup was the one glaring omission on Messi's resume prior to this winter's tournament, with many seeing that lack of international success as the reason why Maradona and Pele were still the top one and two footballers of all time.

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Since his World Cup victory however, Messi, in many people's eyes - including 90min's - has cemented his legacy as the best player of all time.

Speaking to the press ahead of Man City's Carabao Cup clash with Liverpool on Thursday, Guardiola stated that he agrees that Messi is number one:  "Everyone has an opinion but nobody can doubt he's there as the greatest of all time.

"For me he's the best, difficult to understand a player can compete with what he's done. The people who saw Pele or Di Stefano or Maradona. The opinions are sentimental, but the other side, if he wouldn't have won the World Cup, the opinion and my opinion wouldn't change.

"It's normal that people depends if you win or you are evaluated. The final cherries of an incredible career."