‘Messi never made eye contact’

Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has claimed that the Red Devils were unlucky enough to face Lionel Messi in both UEFA Champions League finals against Barcelona.

Messi, 35, helped Barcelona win four UEFA Champions League trophies during his illustrious 17 years at the Camp Nou. After triumphing in 2006, he guided the club to two 2-0 and 3-1 wins over the Red Devils in 2009 and 2011 in the top flight of continental competition.

Sir Alex Ferguson’s side were unable to stop the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner on either occasion, as the player scored twice in both finals. While the Argentine scored a legendary header in Rome, the left-footed striker struck from long range in London two years later.

Speaking of a BBC documentary titled messi (via Spiegel), Ferdinand shared his thoughts on taking on the attacker. He said:

โ€œIn 2009 and 2011 we faced the best team in the world with one of the best players of all time. Looking back now, I think it was very unfortunate to have to play against them.”

โ€œMessi never made eye contact, nothing. He just completely broke away, played away from you, and then suddenly appeared. pop.”

Ferdinand also revealed that then-Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson regretted not instructing Park Ji-Sung to manage the striker. He added:

โ€œFerguson said that I should have put Park Ji-Sung on it. If anyone could have done it, it’s him. But I’ve seen so many clips of that game where he was moving Park around a lot.

“Maybe Park could have slowed it down, and maybe that would have been enough.”

However, he claimed that no Manchester United player could have stopped the Paris Saint-Germain star on those two disastrous nights. He said:

โ€œBut would that have stopped a first class Lionel? I really doubt it. I don’t think any player can do that. I just ended up in the field thinking we have to get off there. They took our soul, basically. He was the main ingredient.”

Messi claimed his fourth UEFA Champions League crown with the Blaugrana in 2015 when he defeated Massimiliano Allegri’s Juventus 3-1 in Berlin.

๐Ÿ“ˆ Barcelona ๐™ฌ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ Lionel Messi: Plays only Champions League football.๐Ÿ“‰ Barcelona ๐™ฌ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™๐™ค๐™ช๐™ฉ Lionel Messi: Plays in the European second division. Coincidence? ๐Ÿ

The Manchester United star opens the match with Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo

Speaking to ESPN (via Mirror), Argentina and Manchester United defender Lisandro Martinez expressed his pride in playing alongside Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. He said:

โ€œI feel privileged, it is an honor to share with them. You learn, you absorb. They have won everything, they want more, an admirable mentality and you give your best in every training sessionโ€.

While the Argentine has been in fine form this season with 25 goal appearances in 17 games in all competitions, the Portuguese has managed just four goals in 14 appearances in total.

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Edited by Sankalp Srivastava

Source: www.sportskeeda.com

Author: Rishank Johri

This is Rishank Johri years of experience in the field of journalism, Rishank Johri heads the editorial operations of the Elite News as the Executive Reporter.

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