Aston Villa goalkeeper Emi Martinez has shared what the legendary Lionel Messi told him before Argentina won the World Cup.
Martinez shone on the world stage, helping his nation to penalty shootout wins in the quarter-finals and final en route to glory.
That triumph allowed Messi to win the final outstanding major trophy he was missing from his collection and elevated Martinez’s status too.
In an interview with Goal, Martinez has shared his conversation with the Argentine talisman, while also outlining one remaining ambition.
Emi Martinez shares Lionel Messi conversation before Argentina World Cup win
He said: “I remember speaking to Leo during the World Cup.
“I said ‘we won the Copa America in Brazil after 28 years, and we won the Finalissima at Wembley against the Champions of Europe’.
“And he said ‘to complete football, we have to win the World Cup against the World Champions! And guess what? We did it!
“My best years are ahead of me. I say I’ve completed football, but I haven’t yet. Not quite,” he concluded, with a reference in the report to him wanting to play Champions League football.
Martinez took his star to a new level in Qatar, and it seems he thinks he now belongs on the world stage regularly as a result.
That means he either wants to get there with Villa, or make a transfer in the not too distant future which gets him there quicker.
Villa fans may hope it is the former, but it may be an interesting summer for the Argentina number one, on the back of his triumph on the world stage.