With his preparations for the World Cup in Russia well underway, Lionel Messi has given an interview to Paper Magazine, for which he strangely posed with a goat in the photoshoot.
Why a goat? Well the article was titled 'Leo Messi is the G.O.A.T.' (The Greatest of All Time). In the interview, the Argentine captain discusses being considered the best player in the world, Argentina's chances in the World Cup, and his possible return to his homeland.
Messi on the World Cup, Argentina and his love of animals
Being considered the best: "I don't consider myself the best, I think I am just another player. On the field, we are all the same when the game begins."
World Cup preparations: "It will be important to prepare well, because in the qualifiers we were fighting up to the end and we didn't have time to prepare ourselves."
Argentina's chances in Russia: "We still have to make ourselves stronger as a team to be in the running to win and be at the same level as other teams like France, Germany, Brazil or Spain. But we have a good group of players and the Argentine team is always going to be a candidate to win, it doesn't matter how we get there. We always aim to win and we will try to go slowly but strongly to advance in the competition."
On retuning to Argentina: "I had to leave Argentina when I was very little and there are things I miss a lot. I go back whenever I can to recharge my batteries, and someday I hope I will be able to go back and live there. There are times when you notice that the good things about your country are what give you greatest happiness and the bad things, the greatest pain."
His passion for animals: "I am a big fan of animals. I grew up with them and they have taught me many things. Now we have our dog Hulk who really is part of the family, we always include him. Our children learn so much from Hulk: The love shown between him and the kids and the kids and him is constant."
Overcoming difficulties: "What has most defined Argentines has always been our ability to overcome difficulties that arise. We have the ability to come together and push ourselves to get out of tough moments, and that is something I value a lot in our people."
Reaching goals: "Over the years, I have also realized that it is not good to let your dreams become an obsession. It increases the pressure and reduces the possibility of reaching them."