“Messi is not a monster like Ronaldo and can fight in England” – Petit is not convinced that Man City is the star of Barcelona

The former Blaugrana midfielder spent time in the Premier League with Arsenal and Chelsea, so he knows how difficult it would be for the Argentine to change

Lionel Messi is not “the same machine” as the “monster” Cristiano Ronaldo, says Emmanuel Petit, and suggested that the Barcelona superstar might have a hard time having an impact on the Premier League.

He moved to England for the six-time Golden Ball winner amid suggestions that he is increasingly disillusioned with life at Camp Nou.

Manchester City is considered to be a possible landing place for the Argentine, given that former Barça boss Pep Guardiola continues to make decisions at Etihad Stadium.

Petit, however, is not convinced that Messi, 32, has the same impact on English football as in Spain.

The eternal rival of South America, Ronaldo, has starred in Manchester United in the past, before moving to Real Madrid and Juventus, but the Portuguese is considered to be a completely different player.

Former Blaugrana midfielder Petit, who also spent time with Arsenal and Chelsea in a World Cup winning race, said Paddy power: “Messi is not Cristiano Ronaldo. Physically it is not the same machine.

“Ronaldo is a monster, but at 32, Messi is only one or two years old playing at the highest level.

“Even playing with great players at Barça, he will not have the same rhythm or the ability to haggle. I am sure he knows that the end is not far away.

Lionel Messi Barcelona 2019-20

“Honestly, I don’t think it’s suitable for the intensity of England. He doesn’t like to be closed and fought, in Spain he is protected.

“It would be a pleasure for English fans to see him there, but I don’t understand why a club like Man City, for example, would move to Messi at age 32 or 33.

“If City wanted to buy it, they should have tried a couple of years ago.

“Messi has won so many trophies and when I look at the Barça team for 10 years, it is clear that now the club was in full swing.” Those players wrote their own legends in that period.

“It is normal that after reaching that level you realize that there is nothing more above, and the only way is down. You cannot stay on top forever.

“If you look at the players who bought since then, you can see that they have not had the financial power to compete against the major powers in the transfer market.”

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“They are one of the biggest clubs, but financially they have been a nightmare recently.”

“Now they have to sell before buying and these days if they want to attract the best players in the world it costs them 80 million euros or more.”

City has rushed to downplay Messi’s conversation by joining its ranks, while those in Barcelona remain interested in linking a talismanic presence to new terms and preserving his status as a single club man.


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Barcelona 3-0 Liverpool: Lionel Messi & Luis Suarez give luckless Reds the most brutal lesson in finishing

They feared Luis Suarez would damage them and he did. He mentioned he would have a good time and he did.

They anxious about Lionel Messi they usually have been proper to. They fretted about Barcelona and with good motive.

They speak about superb margins on the highest stage and no surprise.

Liverpool face a monumental job if they’re to show round this Champions League semi-final. How can a workforce contribute a lot to such a beautiful, absorbing contest and discover themselves on the top of a 3-Zero shelling?

There isn’t a hiding place on this competitors, no hiding place on this stadium. As Camp Nou rocked and rolled and revelled in one other Messi masterclass, for Jurgen Klopp and his aspect there was solely the harshest of classes.

Take your probabilities. As a result of should you do not, then one of the best will.

With 15 minutes to go this recreation – and this tie – was very a lot within the steadiness, Liverpool on high after falling behind to Suarez’s superb first-half strike, however unable to show a sequence of promising positions into one thing extra helpful.

Sadio Mane missed a golden probability, Marc-Andre ter Stegen denied Mo Salah. James Milner hit the goalkeeper when he needed to discover the nook. The purpose was coming, coming, coming.

It got here, alright. However on the different finish.

With a stroke of fine fortune, Barcelona received their second. Suarez’s shot hit the bar, Messi was first to the rebound and all of the sudden every part modified.

A slim deficit grew to become a mountain. A promising efficiency grew to become a 15-minute nightmare, with Messi delivering the killer blow, a knife to the guts delivered in probably the most stunning method conceivable.

His 30-yard free-kick was a murals, speared into Alisson Becker’s high right-hand nook with otherworldly brilliance. It could have damaged Liverpool’s resistance as soon as and for all.

That is the fact of this stage, a stage that Klopp’s aspect confirmed they belonged at for 75 minutes. How, he’ll surprise, can they arrive away with nothing having given every part?

They nonetheless ought to have taken one thing, regardless that they misplaced their form and their heads within the closing levels.

Had Salah transformed a golden probability at 3-0, we’d be speaking about away objectives and the possibility of a salvage job at Anfield. As a substitute the Egyptian, who had carried out magnificently for probably the most half, hit the publish with the purpose gaping. It summed up Liverpool’s evening.

“You’ll be able to lose away,” mentioned Klopp afterwards. “However solely so long as you rating. That was the issue tonight.”

His aspect had fallen behind to a bit of predatory brilliance, Suarez’s razor-sharp motion and anticipation permitting him to satisfy Jordi Alba’s beautifully-judged low cross within the 26th minute. It was his first Champions League purpose in additional than a yr; similar to the final one, it got here towards Alisson Becker.

Suarez, as he had promised, celebrated wildly. He gave Liverpool followers probably the most great of recollections, however there was no sentiment right here. The Uruguayan was his gnarly, aggressive self, ruffling feathers, treading on toes, pulling shirts, scoring objectives.

Liverpool rallied. They defended strongly and neatly, with Joel Matip excelling. They labored they usually labored, they usually discovered area with regularity. Salah terrorised Jordi Alba and Clement Lenglet, Mane may need had a penalty when bundled into by Gerard Pique.

They misplaced Naby Keita to an early damage, however Jordan Henderson slotted straight in. The captain’s elegant go launched Mane earlier than the break, however he despatched his shot over. What did we are saying about harsh classes?

The fact is that Liverpool might now face agony at house and overseas within the subsequent week. This most great of seasons might finish in heartbreak. Twice.

They have to beat Newcastle within the Premier League on Saturday and hope Manchester Metropolis stumble towards Leicester on Monday. Twenty 4 hours later, they need to try to scale Mount Everest within the second leg at Anfield.

Not inconceivable. Barca misplaced a three-goal lead towards Roma in final season’s quarter-finals, and writing Liverpool off isn’t a sensible transfer. This membership, in any case, has a historical past of wonderful fightbacks.

In the event that they flip this one round, although, it would simply high all of them.

Lionel Messi says Liverpool tie ‘isn’t decided’ despite brilliant brace to give Barcelona significant advantage


Lionel Messi has claimed that the Champions League semi-final shouldn’t be determined, though FC Barcelona will take a 3-0 lead over Liverpool back to Anfield next week.

A primary-half aim from Luis Suarez gave the hosts the lead, nevertheless it was Messi’s second-half brace which put the gap between the 2 sides – together with a outstanding free kick. 

Regardless of the clear benefit heading to Merseyside subsequent Tuesday, the Barca man would not suppose that this tie is over.

“We all know that it’s not determined,” he informed Movistar.

“We nonetheless need to go to a really tough stadium, however we’re very joyful.”

Messi scored his 599th and 600th objectives for Barcelona on an evening when his group wanted their star man to step up.

For his first of the night time, a Suarez shot struck the crossbar, just for Messi to observe the ball in anticipation of the rebound, with the Argentine tapping the ball into the empty internet to place his facet 2-Zero up.

His second of the sport, Barcelona’s third and Messi’s 600th in these well-known crimson and blue stripes was one to recollect, although.

The Argentine stepped as much as a free kick having already scored seven direct ones this season. 

Then he whipped in a sensational effort that Alisson – even at full stretch – might do nothing to forestall hitting the web. 

Liverpool will now want their very own magic to beat a major first-leg deficit.

Lionel Messi free-kick: Watch video of Barcelona captain’s sublime second goal against Liverpool


Lionel Messi scored top-of-the-line free-kicks of his glittering profession as Barcelona opened up a seemingly unassailable 3-Zero lead towards Liverpool of their Champions League semi-final first leg.

Luis Suarez had earlier scored against his former team on the Camp Nou handy Barcelona the initiative within the first leg of this final 4 match.

And, with time operating out, Messi scored a scrappy rebound to place Barcelona in full management of the tie.

However only a few moments later, the Barcelona captain scored a sensational objective as Barcelona put one foot within the ultimate of the Champions League.

After Fabinho introduced down Luis Suarez from 35-yards out, Messi stepped up and curled house an unstoppable free-kick, which flew previous Alisson into the very prime nook of Alisson’s objective.

For live updates of Barcelona vs Liverpool: click here.

Barcelona vs Liverpool result: Magical Lionel Messi leaves Reds on the brink in Champions League semi-final


In a season the place Liverpool have so impressively pushed themselves to their very limits, Lionel Messi inevitably confirmed them what the true limits of the sport actually are.

That was the extent the Argentine and the Barcelona assault reached right here. A better and superior aspect picked Liverpool off for a calculated 3-Zero win that absolutely kills the tie and places the Catalans on the point of a primary Champions League last in 4 years.

That the victory was topped with probably the most impossibly angled free-kick from Messi was becoming, as a result of it summed up the calculation of the Barca efficiency, one which was initially charged by former Anfield hero Luis Suarez opening the scoring.

Liverpool didn’t actually deserve that type of defeat and definitely shouldn’t take a lot disgrace in it, however that’s additionally the actual level. That is what this stage is all about. That is what profitable prizes and reaching the top line moderately than simply going the gap is all about.

This ought to be one other a part of the staff’s schooling moderately than something to get too deflated about, since Messi delivered yet one more footballing lesson. As a result of this was a win principally about him.

His deep need to win that fifth private Champions League – and sixth for Barcelona – has been distilled into shows like this, and culminated in that 600th profession objective.

What was all of the extra remariable on condition that resultant chasm was that it was for thus lengthy a type of absorbingly tight video games, however between two sides who so exhilaratingly stretched the pitch. This was the place a lot of the invigorating stress was as each groups regarded to consistently comprise but additionally explosively counter, which means it was a recreation at all times on edge. And never simply by way of the play. There was an growing chew to the match, particularly after Messi felt James Milner had deliberately barged him off the pitch. That in all probability had an unintended impact, if Milner did imply it. It invigorated Messi for what was to come back.

It’s the immense energy of the Argentine’s gravitational pull that solely pushed the match additional out to the bounds, as a result of all play is formed round him, due to the deep affect mere consciousness of his presence has.

Liverpool gave the impression to be attempting a system whereby they initially had three defenders instantly closing in on him when he received inside 30 yards of objective, however that then induced the issue of making house elsewhere. Messi after all discovered it.

Luis Suarez broke the impasse after 26 minutes (Getty)

There was at all times that sense the play was simply on the brink, and it nonetheless required Andy Robertson to push himself to the restrict with probably the most sensational of last-second blocks to come back out of nowhere and forestall Messi opening the scoring.

It wasn’t utterly comfy on the different finish, although. Barca do have an method the place the precise talents of their defenders means they’re equally prepared to play on the road, however that at all times appears so notably harmful towards an assault with the tempo of Liverpool’s.

The tactical dilemma for Liverpool was how far to push this, as a result of Messi’s partnership with Suarez meant Barca have been simply extra able to turning defence into assault in a matter of seconds.

Barca did really feel that bit extra managed then, even on the tempo the match was being performed at. A lot of this got here collectively for that thunderbolt of a gap objective.

In a flash, they have been forward.

Jordi Alba fizzed within the excellent supply and, with Virgil van Dijk of all individuals caught out for a mere millisecond, Suarez had sufficient to only information it into the online.

Mohamed Salah appears on as Lionel Messi celebrates his second (Getty)

That was a part of a spell the place Barcelona simply regarded so sharp, and virtually each one-touch transfer was placing them in.

The frustration for Liverpool was they did then reply to this with resolve, having fun with in all probability their finest spell of the sport.

It actually examined Barca’s typically stunning willingness to sit down on the elasticity of their centre-halves and threat stress, to not point out the solidity of their No 1.

Marc-Andre ter Stegen simply is perhaps the most effective goalkeeper on the earth, as he illustrated with so many reliable saves, after which two good ones – particularly to maintain out Milner.

It didn’t at all times appear the steadiest of floor, however was in the end probably the most extremely calculated of gameplans. This simply supplied the platform for probably the most cutting-edge counter-attack in Europe.

Liverpool will probably be disillusioned to haven’t seized their possibilities in entrance of objective (Getty)

Not for the primary time, Liverpool discovered themselves with out even the time to second-guess Barca’s forwards. They have been simply too fast. Even Van Dijk was once more discovered wanting as Suarez was put in; he put the ball onto the bar, and Messi so simply put it into the online.

The coup de grace was nonetheless to come back. It’s the biggest testomony to Messi that he made that look as simple as his tap-in, regardless of producing an angle of trajectory that’s absolutely near unattainable.

That’s how good he’s. That’s how devastating he was.

There was one late flurry for Liverpool as Salah was virtually caught out when offered with a nice late probability, reacting too late so he might solely hit the submit.

The seconds mattered. The inches mattered. Messi confirmed them why.

Lionel Messi may still be the master, but there is so much more to this brilliant Barcelona team


The issue with focusing your energies on solely Lionel Messi, as Jurgen Klopp rightly recognized in his pre-match press convention, is that Barcelona have 10 different gamers. They aren’t freaks of nature. Not anomalies within the gene pool. They’re, to a person, mere human beings slightly than extraterrestrials. However reviews of their demise have been significantly exaggerated.

Messi received this sport and maybe this tie with two second-half targets to depart Liverpool getting ready to Champions League elimination on the semi-final stage, however he solely did so after these round him had given him the platform. This can be a sometimes-maligned Barcelona however it’s nonetheless Barcelona. Nonetheless a group which, underneath Ernesto Valverde, has solely misplaced 4 video games in league and European competitors over the previous two seasons.

Solely a type of defeats – that scarcely credible reverse in Rome in final yr’s quarter-finals – was in any respect vital. It’s a notable blot on Valverde’s copy guide however it’s the just one. Jurgen Klopp has only a few on his too, however the curious line-up he chosen for this defeat could go down as one in every of them except Liverpool can flip the deficit round.

Joe Gomez was at right-back, making his first begin since breaking his leg in December. Trent Alexander-Arnold was on the substitutes’ bench. The in-form captain, Jordan Henderson, was initially stored in reserve too. Georginio Wijnaldum performed as a false 9. All this, in arguably essentially the most vital sport of your season to this point. On the Camp Nou, no much less.

A few of these choices had been enforced. Others – significantly these down the left-hand facet – felt like a concession to the participant who Klopp described as the best he has ever personally witnessed. Messi was harried, kicked, pushed, barged and primarily crowded out at each alternative.

The in any other case wonderful Joel Matip was a contact lucky to not concede an early penalty when his try and smother the Argentinian. Matip was lashing on the ball, desperately attempting to beat it away, however kicked it up towards his hand. Bjorn Kuipers, the match referee, didn’t discover.

James Milner, who took explicit pleasure in bludgeoning Messi, out on the identical touchline the place he was nutmegged by him 5 years in the past. The ball was out of play after Andrew Roberton’s well-timed sort out. There was no hazard of a fast restart to provoke a counter. However the temptation to depart one in was too nice. Liverpool’s plan out of possession may due to this fact be boiled down to 2 phrases: suffocate Messi.

Maybe then, in a technique, this was a match-up between a person and a collective in any case, however that interpretation falls considerably flat when the 10 different gamers on this Barcelona group step in for his or her chief, denying you the house during which to play and forcing the opening themselves.

There was the defence, led by the spectacular Clement Lenglet and evergreen Gerard Pique, throwing their our bodies down to dam one other try at aim. There was the midfield made up completely over over-30s, not solely maintaining with the frantic tempo however dictating it. There was Marc-Andre ter Stegen, whose interventions initially of the second half had been as essential as any aim.

After which there was Jordi Alba’s cross and Luis Suarez’s end, the 2 actions which produced Barcelona’s first of the evening, the one which killed Liverpool’s early momentum. The execution of each was beautiful, the timing extra so, exploiting Virgil van Dijk’s uncharacteristic lapse in focus to fillet Klopp’s defence. Messi performed no half. He had not wanted too.

Earlier than that, Liverpool had their possibilities. Mohamed Salah was embarking on lengthy, intricate dribbles which might be described as Messi-esque. Sadio Mané was discovering ample house in behind Sergi Roberto, lacking that remaining contact to make a possibility depend. However after Alba and Suarez mixed, that preliminary power and spark by no means returned.

Mo Salah’s affect on the match waned (Reuters)

From there on, a bruised however unbowed Messi took the sport away from Liverpool. It was the 75th minute when he prepared, contained in the penalty space, to react after Suarez’s effort had struck the crossbar and dribble over the goal-line. Six minutes later, he was curling a spectacular free-kick from 25-yards out out of Alisson’s attain and into the highest left-hand nook.

He’s nonetheless this facet’s genius, their match-winner, and the participant who any facet visiting on the Camp Nou should be sure to minimise, because the late present which can resolve this semi-final demonstrated. However scale back Barcelona to Messi and Messi alone at your peril.