Saturday, 17 November, 2018


Rio Ferdinand's description of Lionel Messi after Tottenham masterclass was flawless

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       Mauricio Pochettino says Tottenham should relish playing Barcelona 0:36 Mauricio Pochettino says Tottenham should relish playing Barcelona
Noah Ferguson | 04 October, 2018, 15:20

Tottenham defender Kieran Trippier accepted Barca earned their victory but said his team, without star men Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli and Jan Vertonghen due to injury, can be satisfied with a second-half fightback that saw goals from Harry Kane and Erik Lamela.

"We were aware that with the results we have had there were doubts", Messi told BeIn Sports after the match.

"It's not easy to change chip, you have to be switched on in the league to do well in Europe". He has five goals in two UCL games this season, at a rate of one goal every 36 minutes. "The Champions League is special, but we will fight to win the league and the cup as well".

Messi produced a gorgeous ball to send Jordi Alba scampering clear down the left channel and, with Lloris having raced out and left his goal unmarked, the left-back squared for Coutinho to tuck away his first Barca goal in the Champions League.

Being dubbed a cross between Xavi and Andres Iniesta must be a huge weight on Arthur's shoulders, but the Brazilian midfielder is living up to that lofty billing.

Coutinho performed a minor miracle to keep the ball in play on the byline with Rakitic launching himself into a sensational 20-yard volley that clipped the post on its way into Lloris' net.

When asked if anybody could argue that Messi isn't the best, Alba said: "He dines at a different table to everyone else".

Here's Rakitic's goal again, but this time with commentary from Sierd de Vos - the Dutch broadcasting world's answer to Larvell Jones from Police Academy...

"When Leo goes on a run, all the rest of us can do is grit our teeth".

"We have been a very [supportive] team. Modric is a great player, one of the best in the world", Alba said, via Marca. "But I think for Barcelona it was worse because in the history of football Barcelona always try to play along the grass". He's just on another level and no player can be compared with him. When I was at Valencia I had the same opinion.

Barca set their stall out to end Real's European reign before a ball was even kicked this season with Messi in his first statement as new club captain after the exit of Andres Iniesta promising to "bring this lovely cup back home to the Camp Nou". Arthur plays like he knows he belongs on this stage.

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