Javier Masherano (Supplied
Cape Town - Argentina international Javier Mascherano is confident that Lionel Messi will perform to the best of his abilities during this year’s World Cup campaign.
Messi has endured a difficult season, which has featured a tax fraud investigation, injury for a protracted period and a slight lapse in form at stages. There has also been the continued speculation about a possible departure from the club which has nurtured him since he was a young boy.
However, Mascherano insists that all of that is now behind Messi, which will allow for more clarity of thought ahead of Argentina’s World Cup title charge.
"Leo is happy and that is a great sign," Mascherano told Ole, ahead of Argentina’s World Cup opener against Bosnia and Herzegovina on Sunday.
"When he is content is when he performs best," added the Argentinean defender.
However, the central defender did also acknowledge that the rest of the Argentinean team would also be required to shoulder some responsibility during the tournament, which could only enhance the national team’s prospects of lifting the World Cup title.
"We cannot excuse ourselves of responsibility," added Mascherano.
"We have to make him perform at his best. It will depend on what we give him as a team."