Once Lionel Messi is out of the equation Argentina is nothing so says Spainish striker, Diego Costa.

Costa believes Argentina should always "thank God" for Messi and not criticise the Barcelona superstar.

Messi watched from the stands as Spain pummeled Jorge Sampaoli's men 6-1 in Madrid on Tuesday, inflicting the joint-worst defeat in Argentina history.

Costa, who opened the scoring for Spain, felt Argentina missed Messi badly in Tuesday's friendly.

"You have to do an analysis in all aspects," Brazil-born Costa said of Messi.

"The Argentines criticise Messi a lot, but you can tell that when Messi is not there, they are something else.

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"A player like Messi should not be criticised. You should thank God that he's there. Messi must always be treated well. Even if he plays a bad game with the national team, having him on the field makes a difference.

Costa sustained a heavy knock in the process of scoring his goal on Tuesday after colliding with Argentina goalkeeper Sergio Romero, but he is confident he will be available to face Deportivo La Coruna in LaLiga on Sunday.

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