Philipp Lahm picks between Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona, says Argentina were better team in 2006


World Cup winning captain with Germany Philipp Lahm spoke with La Nacion in Argentina about who he thinks is the best Argentine, how he thinks Argentina were better than Germany in 2006 and much more.

The Germany legend has nearly won it all throughout his career. From Champions League to league titles to a World Cup, Lahm was a generational player for his country. Having played Lionel Messi several times throughout his career, including two out of three World Cup tournaments, Lahm gave his opinion on his counterpart captain from the 2014 World Cup. Regarding Lionel Messi, here’s what Lahm had to say:

“For me, he’s an incredible player. Maybe the best that has ever existed. He’s an exceptional player but maybe he’s missing that big title with the Argentina national team.

“For the rest, he’s a fantastic player and unstoppable in one on one situations. I have to be honest: I have had a bad day against him.”

About who is the best between Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona:

“Well, to start, for me, I have always been very enthusiastic about Messi. But Maradona too! I would say that Diego Maradona has truly marked an entire generation. And not only in Argentina but in Europe. For that, I would say the best Argentine, when it comes to football, is Maradona.

“But closely right behind him is Messi. And I have mentioned why: Messi has not yet won an important title with the national team, unlike Maradona.”

About winning the World Cup:

“The best thing for a football player is to be crowned world champion. And for that, I have no doubt. If I have to pick one, the best title of my life is that 2014 World Cup. It was an incredible experience.

“And against Argentina, with whom we had played a lot against in previous years. It’s true that we had eliminated them before but they were playing a really good tournament.”

Lahm also spoke about the 2006 World Cup and about playing Argentina:

“The 2006 World Cup was my first one. I was 22 years old and it was a World Cup at home, in Germany. It was an incredible atmosphere.

“We got to the quarter finals at a disadvantage to play Argentina, who were the better of the two teams, with absolute world stars. I remember that Messi was on the bench at the time; Riquelme played and was later substituted but he was an incredible player. They had Crespo in attack… Truly a top team.

“And with maybe a bit of luck, we got to the semifinals but today I say that it was an absolute surprise to advance and finish third in the tournament.

“In contrast, in 2010 it was completely different. We were a young team playing very well together. We beat England in the Round of 16 and faced Argentina again in the quarter finals. That was one of Germany’s best matches at a World Cup: We played incredibly well as a team and we won in sensational fashion 4-0.”

The Germany also had Martin Demichelis as a team mate with Bayern Munich:

“First of all, I appreciate Martin very much as a player. But also as a person. He was a great team mate and you could absolutely trust him, both on and off the pitch. He was a good player and when he went from center back to midfield, he brought new elements to that position: Technical abilities and quick solutions.”

If there was no Lionel Messi, who would be the best Argentine:

“There are some good Argentine players! Someone who people always talk about is Aguero. He left his mark at Manchester City and now he is leaving the club but he has been a symbol and that is clear.

“I’m curious to see where he plays because I think he has one, two or maybe even three more years competing at the top. He is a very interesting player.

“On the other hand, the Champions League is a great measure and a player who last season and this season has shown what he can do is Angel Di Maria. He went back to playing sensationally with Paris Saint-Germain! Unfortunately, once more, it wasn’t enough.

“But Argentina always produces excellent players because it’s an absolute football nation.”


  1. Ok I will say one thing regarding the likelihood of the likes of C.Romero, Senesi, Molina and Emi Martinez getting a chance: Thanks to the NT’s very congested schedule next month (2 WCQ and then atleast 4 copa games) Scaloni will have no choice but to rotate and so i would imagine that those said players will get their time to shine.
    Sadly the likes of Licha Martinez and Buendia are very unlikely to be included, although the former will go to the olympics (if it gets held that is) and will very likely start so he may get his chance to show the world what he’s got.

    • Scaloni must announce his squad soon as L.Martinez and Senesi play the last round of league football on Sunday.

  2. 2006 What a world cup it was. Its my favourite WC.The atmosphere was great in Germany. We had such a great side. But as always been the case we lost it again due to some errors. Well its part of football. Have to live with it.

    Pound for pound 2002 WC team was our best among the last 2 decades. But that team somehow produced the worst ever WC result for us. 2006 team was also phenomenal. Sighss…

      • If i am not wrong in that world cup. The traditional first round upsets was not there. Meaning all the superpowers was qualified to the next rounds and the quaterfinal teams were all of good quality.

        Unlike the recent world cups were there is always a dark house running deep till the semis or even finals. As per me the 2018 world cup was the worst in that. Croatia in the final? They were a great team. But i think the world cup is ment for the elite superpowers. It should be like that.

        • Yes 2018 lost a bit of flavor, 0 South American team in semi, no African team in the round of 16. And most of all, we fucked it up. The quality of play of Argentina was the worst ever. Croatia deserved it, it was a very balanced team even though I am not a fan. I didn’t like England neither.

  3. It will be shocking to see Serie A’s 2nd ranking team Atalanta’s regular CB Cristian Romero is not in playing 11 but Serie A’s outside of top 10 Fiorentina’s Lucas Quarta Martinez starts over C. Romero.

  4. Argentina team is trophy less because of the coaches. The arrogance of these coaches is so high. I don’t understand why the hell scaloni has not given a chance to Emii Martinez and Emi Buendia. What is he trying to prove. I think Scaloni is trying to prove that he understands football the most. This season we have witnessed great performance from Emi Martinez, Emi Buendia, Christian Romero and Lisandro Martinez. I don’t care about Olympic any more. I think this time all these footballers deserve to be in the national team. If any of them is not picked up for the senior team specially for the copa then I must say there’s no point in putting up good performances infront of Scaloni. But I think Scaloni is also a smart coach. And it would be difficult for Scaloni to ignore the performances of those players. I don’t why the hell Armani is still considered the no 1 Goal keeper specially ahead of Emi Martinez. Scaloni is going to do the same mistake what sampaoli did by selecting willy cabellaro. Goal keeping position is our main concern. I still believe Scaloni. Because Scaloni is the guy who selected Nicholas Gonzales that’s too at the time of playing for 2nd division club.

  5. Emi martinez equals PL record of 15 clean sheets in a season. Great timing & hope scaloni doesnt prove himself to be blind. No way emi & marchesin can rank behind armani. Andrada in squad will be a joke. Musso has had an average season. So he losing out is still ok.

    • Aston Villa fans call him signing of the season, player of the season, etc. I mean to have 14 clean sheets when you are protected by Mings and Konsa in the most competitive league is pretty impressive. I also have a weird feeling that players like Emi and Romero seem to have to play SIGNIFICANTLY better than any one else to be selected. If they were to play “slightly”, “fairly”, or “decently” better than the other options they get ignored.

    • Absurd. What an incredible rise to the top for a player that was virtually non existent until last year. I refuse to believe Scaloni and the entire supporting staff aren’t aware of Emis form. If Scaloni an co. are the objective leaders they claims to be, Martinez will not only be apart of the 23 but he’ll start.

      • There is no goalkeeper better than Emi Martinez I do not see Allison, Ederson,Oblak making 15 clean sheet as Aston Villa goalkeeper.Only Chelsea goalkeeper Mendy has some claims

  6. My frnd Godin 11…Dont be upset..
    “guys please be ready emotionally mentally to handle yourself. when scaloni announce his squad for copa I guarantee some of us will be

    No football coach in the world chooses a team to keep their fans happy. All coaches have their own plans for the team. The coach selects the players whom he can execute his plan.

    Moreover, not all fans will like one type of player, each fan will choose different player. It is not possible for any coach in the world to select a squad that suits all the fans.

    No matter who he selects, he has a plan behind him, and Inshallaah Argentina will win the Copa. Vamos Argentina.

    • My friend Reyan
      I’m not upset but it’s frustrating how political killing arg nt. I don’t want and I’m not asking a peferct of 23 players
      What I want as fan is just reasonably good squad. If they want to take local players at least they Should take the best of the best in local players
      Especially very young ones likes f. Vera
      Julian Alvarez and thiago almada.
      Those are the one I can remember now.But not andrada who is joke not Armani.especially when we have much better keepers than those.
      Good squad will be take cuti Romero not kannemann take lich martinez not pezzella. People may think I’m anti di maria and Aguero no I’m not
      This is my reasons look di maria are far best player After messi but here where is the problem lies to get best out of di maria he must be in right side
      Where Lionel messi operates coming inside occupy the space behind strike links up between midfielders to attacks. If he plays left side we will not see the best of di maria he will look average, clueless in that position so the question is? which one will you scarfice Messi or di maria? As aguaro he been injured for long time and there is 50% chance he will get injury during the campaign. It’s so much risky taking him and Dybala who was injured Most of this season we can’t afford to have injured, out form and old players because of different pressure. Since risky so high to take both aguaro and Dybala I personally take Dybala over Aguero.

  7. Eid Mubarak all of my Frnds. I ask God on this Hollyday of Eid … May “Argentina of my soul” win this year’s Copa tournament.

    • Eid mubarak to all muslims and non muslims alike. Honestly during this cursed COVID crisis, all I want is for everyone (especially those in India) to be safe, winning or losing a football match just pales in comparison…..with that being said I want Argentina to win COPA and the WC and honestly judging by the current squad I’d say it’s possible.

  8. Ok, so actually Scaloni is releasing the squad for the QUALIFIERS Sunday and the Copa squad June 10. Will they be the exact same squad or a few changes? Wait to see.

  9. ARGENTINA in 2014 OVERACHIVED while the 2006 squad did the opposite, now who is better, Maradona or Messi is really an open question, me personally always believed that one Great Argentine is as good as another and we as fans should be elated that we have such option to choose and not who is better.

    2014 is very painful and it never gets old no matter how many times I thought about, the team went into the tournament and got better as they moved from one win to another, beating one cough cough big bad scary European country after another and ONLY shitty luck prevented them from winning it. ARGENTINA was the better team, missing one chance after another, nm the no PK call when Higuian was knocked on his ass inside the box.

    ARG in COPA should NEVER be overconfident but they shouldn’t be the opposite either, you playing at home, OWN IT.

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