Diego Maradona has put up an interesting defence for Lionel Messi who was handed a 4-game ban few days ago for allegedly insulting a match official. The Argentine legend claimed the punishment meted out to the Barcelona talisman was exaggerated adding that his countryman is a teddy bear and a sensational person.

He has however vowed to  to lobby FIFA over the four-match ban. He told radio show La Oral Deportivo: ‘I am going to speak with Infantino, I think it’s terrible. Four games is a lot. The seriousness of Messi’s words are also very strong, but I think it [the suspension] can be changed. He is a sensational person and doesn’t do anything except train. He is a teddy bear with his team-mates, with everyone.’

Messi missed Argentina’s clash with Bolivia this week and will miss three more qualifiers.