Pablo Maffio showed exactly why Lionel Messi He was hailed as the toughest opponent of all time after his ‘shadow’ with a magnificent human-marked display.
Messi, who left Barcelona in the summer to sign for Paris Saint-Germain, came up against Mafio when his opponent played for Girona.
“Man-mark doesn’t bother me – you know there will be tough matches and it can be awkward to always have someone around you,” Messi said.
“In truth, this doesn’t happen to me very often. It doesn’t bother me, but it’s awkward.
“Pablo Mafio of Girona [was the toughest man-marker]. It was intense!
“I’m never a complainer. I think physical contact and kicks are part of the game.
“I get more annoyed when I play badly and I get a little more angry. But if I’m not [playing bad], It’s not a problem, it’s part of the game and I don’t take it personally.
Mafio, who is currently on loan at Real Mallorca, has wrapped up the footage in 2017 when he came up against Messi in a 3-0 win over Barcelona’s Estadi Montalvi.
The 24-year-old has been relentless in his performance of Barcelona legend A La Ji-Sung Park against Andrea Pirlo in the Spanish right-back Champions League.
“When Messi gets up in the morning, he is [realised] A fan said Mafio was still spotting him.
When another posted: “Legend has it that Mafio flew to Paris and still marks the goat.”
And a third added: “He was standing behind Messi in free-kicks and corners … even penalties.”
The fourth commented: “Is he still identifying with Messi? [the] The bathroom? “
Mafio has been loaned to Girona for three different loan spells, but he revealed that Messi wanted to learn more about him after the match.
“He is [Messi] I asked a couple of things that I had borrowed [Manchester] How much the city and my age. Everything was fine, ”he said in a post-match interview.
The VfB Stuttgart player added: “I had to recognize him and I had to be close to him and not see the ball.
“It’s hard not only from a football standpoint but also mentally. I appreciate the trust the coach has put in me.