The latter is no excuse nor do I find the statement true. Messi doesn't seem like an arse towards his teammates as an example. Xyp9x, who, despite the constant praise, is heavily underrated, doesn't act like an arse either, not the slightest.
You don't have to make other people look bad to look good yourself. That's kindergarten tactics TBH, people with no absolute ideals, but only relative ideals.