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'Emotional' Messi pays tribute to 'mentor' Guardiola

London , Sat, 28 Apr 2012 ANI

London, Apr 28(ANI): Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has paid an emotional tribute to Pep Guardiola, after he announced leaving the Catalans at the end of the season.

Messi, who has won FIFA's top individual award for the last three years, said whatever he is today is because of Guardiola, and credited him for turning him into world's best player.

"I owe him everything. I want to thank Pep from the bottom of my heart for so much that he has given to my career and to me as person," The Sun quoted Messi, as saying.

Messi also clarified that he didn't attend Guardiola's press conference because he was not in the right frame of mind.

"Due to the deeply emotional time this is for me I preferred not to be at Pep's Press conference," Messi said.

"I wanted to stay away from the media because I know they will want to see the sadness in the faces of the players and it is something I decided not to show," he added. (ANI)

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