Kirk Hammett has ''never, ever, ever'' had a problem with Metallica's former guitarist Dave Mustaine.

The 54-year-old lead guitarist for the heavy metal band, who replaced Dave after he was fired in 1983 because of his battle with alcoholism and drugs, has revealed he holds no bad blood against the former band member despite taking his position.

Speaking to the 'The Word of Wheeler' podcast, Hammett said: ''Well, you know, the whole thing with Dave is I've never, ever, ever had a problem with Dave.''

Instead the rocker has revealed he has felt sorry for the 55-year-old red head, he explained: ''I've always seen Dave as someone who was just really, really sad, really angry, really frustrated about his situation with Metallica, and he never could let that go. And, you know, I've always shown a lot of empathy for him, understanding that he was just p***ed off. It's the equivalent of the woman of your life leaving you.

''When your band kicks you out ... I've never been kicked out, but I can imagine it's a horrible experience, especially if it's a band that you feel really passionately about. So I can understand Dave's plight over all these years.''