The Barcelona star has long been thought of as one of the greatest players not only of his generation but of all time due to his goal scoring exploits and all-round standard of play.
He has often been compared to Portugal scoring sensation Cristiano Ronaldo – Messi’s old adversary who is three goals away from meeting the all-time international goal scoring record of 109.
Messi – who is currently starring for Argentina in this summer’s Copa America tournament in South America – will see his contract at the Camp Nou expire in two weeks, with no new deal yet penned.
Del Bosque is cited as telling Spanish radio station Canal Sur by Marca: “Lionel Messi is the world’s best and that is not slight on Cristiano Ronaldo. He is a kid from the street, from the neighbourhood. One of those who has been playing and mocking you on the field. That is why he is the best player of the world.”
As a manager, Del Bosque won eight trophies with Madrid – including two La Liga titles and two Champions League crowns – while also winning the World Cup and European Championships while boss of La Roja.