The newest member of Spain’s international squad Sergio Canales has said that opposition players “suffer” Lionel Messi whilst fans “enjoy him on TV”.
Speaking after Messi’s stunning hat-trick against his Real Betis side, Canales told Spanish sports newspaper Marca: “He’s the best in the world. Not just because of the other day on our pitch. He defines matches. He shows it every year and he has been at that level for so many years, it is something we’ve never seen before.
“We are lucky to have been able to enjoy this player playing in our league for so much time. On TV, we enjoy him, on the pitch you suffer him. That’s the difference.”
Canales, who earned his first call-up to the Spanish squad for their upcoming Euro 2020 qualifiers against Norway and Malta, spoke about Betis fans applauding Messi’s performance, saying: “It says a lot about them, they recognise what they saw. It was logical and it explains the greatness of Betis fans. Receiving a standing ovation at a ground that isn’t your own is always something nice.”
The 28-year-old midfielder has suffered serious injuries in both knees and has a creative fish tattoo over one of his scars. He will hope to make his first full appearance for the national side in the upcoming qualifiers.