Lionel Messi news: Former Argentina staff reveals advice Diego Maradona gave to Messi for the perfect free kick
What's the story?
In case you didn't know
Messi scored a brace to help Barcelona to a 3-0 win over Liverpool in the first leg of their Champions League semi-finals on Wednesday night.
While his first effort came off of a deflection, his second 30-yard effort spot-kick be regarded as one of the most spectacular free-kicks in his illustrious career.
Speaking of his goals after the game, the Argentine talisman said,
"The goal from the free kick? It was spectacular, but I was lucky to have found the corner. We could have also made the fourth goal, but we must be satisfied."
"However, it is not over yet: the return race is waiting for us. Liverpool is a team with so much physicality and in some situations, we have made a bit of effort."
The heart of the matter
Writing in his biography, 'Call to Rebellion', Signorini revealed how Maradona played a role in shaping Messi's free-kicks. He wrote (via Express UK),
"In February 2009, just a few months after Maradona took over as coach of the national team, we played a friendly against a local team in Marseille."
"We practised the day before and, after the session, Javier Mascherano, Carlos Tevez and Messi stayed behind for shooting practice."
"Messi put the ball down and looked up at the goal slightly to his left. When he struck the ball it went some way over the bar to the goalkeeper's right. He was annoyed and headed towards the dressing room passing me as he went."
"I said, ‘Are you going to go and shower after that rubbish? Stop getting annoyed, go and get a ball and try again’."
According to the former Argentina fitness coach, Maradona heard the conversation and proceeded to help the Barcelona star by saying,
"Don't hurry the shot so much, slow your swing down, because if not the ball does not know what you want it to do."
Barcelona will face Celta Vigo in La Liga this weekend before travelling to Anfield for the second leg of their Champions League semi-final against Liverpool.