Messi backs son Thiago as a 'phenomenon' but admits Mateo is 'terrible'

The Argentine forward is set to welcome the arrival of another sibling for Mateo and Thiago, with wife Antonella Roccuzzo closing in on her due date

Lionel Messi has hailed his eldest son Thiago as a "phenomenon" when it comes to his football ability, but the Barcelona star does not hold high expectations of Mateo just yet.

As children of the sports' biggest star, Thiago (five years old) and Mateo (two) will have a lot to live up to if they choose to follow in the iconic Argentine's footsteps.

The five-time Ballon d’Or and four-time Champions League winner has built an incredible legacy in his 13 years at the Catalan side, but the Messi name could continue beyond him as he is getting the duo into the game early.

And the 30-year-old has been left heavily impressed by the early signs of his first-born, but he was a bit more harsh when reviewing Mateo.

"They’re very different," Messi told TyC Sports. "Thiago is a phenomenon, really good. And the other, the exact opposite: he's a son of a bitch."

Messi's use of the colloquial expression "hijo de puta" was more of an indictment on his youngest's skill, instead of a harsh personal insult on him and wife Antonella Roccuzzo.

He continued: "Mateo is terrible. It’s really good seeing how different they are. Mateo does play a bit of football, right-footed. He’s more coordinated. He hits it well. But, he’s small.

"Thiago likes cars, motorcycles, he likes soccer, but even then he plays a little bit and gets tired."

Messi also spoke of Thiago's close friend, Benja, the son of team-mate Luis Suarez.

“Thiago and his friend Benja are the same age and he’s football crazy. He loves to play football, he watches football, he knows all the players."