Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk has hailed the qualities of Lionel Messi and the Barcelona side ahead of the first leg of their Champions League semi-final. The Reds have done extremely well to progress to the final four of the competition for the second-straight year, but they need to overcome the challenge presented by the Blaugrana to reach the final in Madrid.
Speaking to reporters, Van Dijk stressed that he is not thinking about the Ballon d’Or title after recently being honoured with the PFA Player of the Year accolade. Implying to Messi, he added that there are players, who are basically out of the world and he has yet to showcase such kind of consistency.
Former Premier League full-back Danny Mills has compared Heung-min Son to the likes of Lionel Messi and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. The South Korean star has been a revelation for Tottenham Hotspur during the ongoing campaign and he is currently the second-highest scorer for the team behind Harry Kane this term.
Speaking to Stadium Astro, Mills indicated that Son has been restricted with his performances whenever Harry Kane has been on the field. He added that the former Bayer Leverkusen man can be compared to Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, given his urge to have more of the ball to make an impact, he said: “Whenever you play with a superstar player, as one of the ‘lesser’ players you’re going ‘right, I need to give it to him’. And I think sometimes there is that focus – Harry Kane’s available, let’s give it to him.
Paris Saint-Germain defender Dani Alves has said that Neymar has been misunderstood at the Capital outfit, and the team need to show more trust towards the attacker just like Lionel Messi at Barcelona. The Brazil international joined Les Parisiens in a world-record deal from Barcelona in the summer of 2017 and he has since fared impressively across all competitions despite suffering a couple of metatarsal injuries.
Speaking to RMC Sport, Alves said that Neymar has yet to gain the trust from every member of the current squad and the same needs to happen sooner for the Brazilian to excel with the club, he said: “Here, everyone has not yet understood Neymar.When the ball is at the feet of this kind of player, there is like the scent of truffles. What’s going on is like with Messi. Around Messi, there are other players.
Argentine Football Association Claudio Tapia is confident that Lionel Messi will return for national team duty at the turn of the year. The Barcelona superstar has not featured for the South American heavyweights since the summer World Cup where the nation were ousted by France at the round of 16 stage.
Speaking to reporters, Tapia highlighted that Messi has never put himself out of contention for national team duty and believes the attacker’s love for the shirt, should see him return for the next round of internationals in March, he said:“Lionel Messi never left the Argentina national team. I believe that the love which he has for the shirt is so great that when he will be called, he’ll be there. I have no doubt about it.
Boca Juniors striker Carlos Tevez has revealed the difference between former teammates Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo during his recent interview with the Argentine press. Tevez had the opportunity to share the same dressing room with Ronaldo during his time at Manchester United whilst he has featured alongside Messi on a number of occasions when he has represented the national side.
In a report covered by Depor, Tevez highlighted that Messi has always been a natural on the playing field and he had barely witnessed Messi in the gym when the two were working together, he said: “Lionel Messi, I never saw him in the gym I’ve never seen him train in the stops or do technical exercises. It is all natural to him, but on penalties he trained: first he did not take them and now he shoots them all at the corner.”