Messi’s Champions League Form In Quarter-Finals Will Reassure United
The 31-year-old Argentine ace has been in scintillating form for his club, as well as stepping up his performances in Europe’s top-tier club competition.
However, it’s safe to say that the Barça captain has had a tough time when he reaches this stage of the competition in recent seasons.
Goals come naturally to Messi, but the Daily Mirror reports that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner has failed to score in eleven quarter-final matches in the competition.
Posted below are the matches in which he hasn’t scored.
- 2017/18: Barcelona 4-1 Roma; Roma 3-0 Barcelona
- 2016/17: Juventus 3-0 Barcelona; Barcelona 0-0 Juventus
- 2015/16: Barcelona 2-1 Atlético Madrid; Atlético Madrid 2-0 Barcelona
- 2014/15: Paris Saint-Germain 1-3 Barcelona; Barcelona 2-0 Paris Saint-Germain
- 2013/14: Barcelona 1-1 Atlético; Atlético 1-0 Barcelona
- 2012/13: Barcelona 1-1 PSG (second leg)
So, yeah, the last time that Messi scored in this stage of the competition was against PSG in 2013, so it might come as reassuring news to Red Devils fans.
Of course, United fans shouldn’t be getting carried away, especially for the performance that the Argentina captain put in for his side the last time that he was at Old Trafford.
Former England and Real Madrid manager Fabio Capello called Messi one of football’s three “geniuses,” while Jamie Carragher recently showered him with praise.
However, United caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær believes that his side can beat the reigning La Liga champions in the quarter-finals.
“We’ve shown against PSG that on any given day we can beat a top team,” he said (via the Guardian).
“Then again there’s so many variables and these games will be decided by margins. And of course with [our] VAR [decision], even though for me it’s a penalty, you can still be unlucky and not get it in the last minute.
“Then we’d be out and no one would really remember the PSG performance. So yes, we can go all the way but you’ve got to be lucky and good along the way.
“The confidence in the players, it’s sky high. And the mood is good, the training attitude is good, so hopefully we can keep that run going.”
United host Barcelona for the first leg on 10th April, with the return leg to take place on 16th April.
Which team will make it to the semi-finals out of United and Barcelona?
Let us know in the comments.