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Have grown more content and mature as a person: Messi 

Madrid, April 14 (IANS) FC Barcelona striker Lionel Messi has said he is happy and more mature as a person now as the Spanish football season reaches its decisive final weeks.

Messi admitted that he had suffered problems in the 2013-2014 campaign, but after netting 33 league goals so far this season things are much better, reports Xinhua.

“The truth is that I started the season in a different way after what happened to me last season. I had a tough year due to events off the field, injury and my form. But this season I started differently and now I feel good,” he said.

“I was inconsistent last season. I was out for a while due to injury and when I came back I didn’t feel right. It was a year that I have tried to quickly forget and get back to my best through hard work, smiling and effort,” added Messi.

The striker said he had tried to draw positives from the experience, saying it had helped him to “grow and learn”.

He was asked about his partnership with fellow strikers Luis Suarez and Neymar and explained that he didn’t see their arrival as extra pressure.

“I never felt obliged to score goals because if I didn’t the team would not win. On the contrary, Barcelona have always had great strikers, not just now with Ney and Luis, who we are making the most of because they are both world class figures. They give us not just goals but also plenty of other things,” he explained.

The 27-year-old also discussed being a father and his life off the pitch. He said that in football there was little time for reflection: “because everything happens so quickly, there are so many things to play for, there are always new goals and I don’t look back.”

However, that is different at home, where “we remember things that have happened to us and we see how time has passed, how we grow, how life is.”

He said that the birth of his two-year-old son Tiago had been a major factor in him maturing.

“Before, if I lost or did something wrong, I wouldn’t talk to anyone for three or four days until the anger passed. Now if I lose a game, I get home and see my son and it all passes me by. Being a father has helped me to grow. It has helped me not go crazy because of football and to think that there are other things in life as well,” concluded Messi

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