Messi 'is not of this world'

2010-04-07 07:52

Barcelona - Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger described the four goal performance of Lionel Messi in Barcelona's destruction of his side in their Champions League quarter-final second leg clash as like something out of a computer game.

Following the 2-2 draw at the Emirates, Nicklas Bendtner put the Gunners ahead on aggregate before a solo performance from the majestic Messi who bagged his first ever four goal haul - the sixth player in Champions League history but the first since Andrei Shevchenko five years ago - as Barca ran out 4-1 winners (6-3 on aggregate).

"Congratulations to Barcelona, they deserved to win over the two legs. They are a good side but Messi makes the difference as he can win the game at any moment. He is like a Playstation player, he can take advantage of every chance," said Wenger, who felt that his side was up against the top side in Europe at the moment.

"We made too many mistakes defensively when we had possession of the ball and we paid for it. We are a young team and we can improve a lot.

"The future is very positive but we lacked maturity in the final ball tonight (Tuesday).

"After we scored our first goal we had a great chance to score again but we made a bad decision with the final ball.

"I don't know if Barcelona will win the Champions League but they will have their chances especially with players returning.

"They are the best side at the moment but it is a cup and we could have made it very difficult for them."

Arsenal can ease their disappointment now by concentrating on the fight for the Premier League title with their next match against local rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

"We now need to focus on the Premier League and we now go to White Hart Lane which is a place where we have done well before," said Wenger.

"We need to be fully focused but it will be the best thing for us to play a derby."

His Barcelona counterpart Pep Guardiola wanted to emphasise the success of the whole club rather than singling out individuals.

"It is congratulations for the institution as we have now reached the semi-finals in the last three years," said the 39-year-old former Barcelona playmaker, who won the Champions League as a player in 1992.

"This was a game with two good teams but we had more possession in the first half and that made the difference.

"We are extremely pleased at being in the semi-finals and having achieved this without compromising our style. We press hard and work together even after 70 or 80 minutes and this is decisive.

"Leo (Messi) deserves all the praise he has been given and he is the perfect role model for young players although it would be impossible for them to copy him of course.

"To describe him as someone from Playstation is a great description but I don't know what level he would be on.

"This was a team performance though and we all play with the same mentality of attacking. Even Victor (Valdes) can do this by throwing the ball out."

He is now expecting a tough semi-final tie with Inter Milan, who they played in the group stage and had earlier reached the last four by beating Russian side CSKA Moscow 1-0 in Moscow, 2-0 on aggregate.

"They are not the team I would have wanted to face and the fact they have won several leagues in Italy shows how strong they are," said Guardiola.

"Jose Mourinho is the one of the best if not the best coaches around as he has won leagues in Portugal, England and Italy. I am proud to play against him," he added.


  • Man U - 2010-04-07 08:02

    I have mentioned in the past that on current form, Rooney was at the time better than Messi. However, i must say that Messi has been brilliant since the start of the year and he is no doubt front in line to pick up the FIFA world player of the year! Great to watch him in action! Sorry for the Gunners!

  • samsam - 2010-04-07 08:02

    Winning against Barca in their backyard was a wish from Arsenal. Who is the best is it Maradona or Messi?

  • arsenal fan - 2010-04-07 08:04

    It will probably the best of Italy, Spain, France and Germany in the semis! Go Bayern!

  • chosen1 - 2010-04-07 08:13

    all i cn say is gunners too many mistakes,and and in order to score goals you firstly need possesion which stats showed barca had most of,Gunners were very sloppy with there passing i must say,but barca made them pay with there mistakes but all credit to messi,one wonders if the great game will ever have a player of his calibur grace a soccer pitch again,as he has set the standard very high for someone to be called a great player, but all respect to the gunners for making it this far,they can at least say the best team won on the night..... period

  • Bonyongo - 2010-04-07 08:21

    Bafana Bafana will stand a very slim chance, if at all, in this world cup against this kind of play, this commitment to the ball, this hunger for goals and this endurance for 90 minuts. Qualities we all lack in the National squad. Give or take.

  • Jack - 2010-04-07 08:23

    Barcelona must take the OSCAR award for best ACTING performance! No matter the opponent, they know how to pressure the refs to give EVERY decision their way! If any barca playa feels their opponents heartbeat near them, they trip and roll like genuine PRO'S!!!! 4 goals for that argentine cheeter and they think his good. hahahahaha pathetic. He is a cheater just like his uncle maradona and his buddy tierry henry. LOSERS

  • Nthalrhi - 2010-04-07 08:26

    Leo is a mess without mercy. Little witch who broke so many hearts last night. This is what is called a footballer and is destined to take Maradona's place in history. I wonder if our players were watching. Congratulations to Barca.

  • Mato Modibedi - 2010-04-07 08:28

    Messi is top class and will not be suprised if he continues to take the World Football Player Award once again. If I have to class him on the PlayStation I would say ONE OF A KIND.

  • Bhakabhaka - 2010-04-07 08:38

    The gunners lost to greate team,well done to Barca and hope they go all the way. In the past greate players like Henry never archieved as much on international level(national team), let us wait and see if Messi will succeed where others failed.

  • Ryan - 2010-04-07 08:40

    It was a case of Wenger taking a knife to a gunfight ..

  • TS - 2010-04-07 08:41

    @Jack, where do u come from? Clearly you do not understand football. You must be a Premiership team supporter, beleiving that football is about being hard and pushing players around. NO! It is about class and the ability to leave the players chasing shadows - like Leo does it. Football does not get better than this....... Eat your heart out and watch another English team lose tonight....

  • Tessa - 2010-04-07 08:42

    When Rooney was scoring everyone was hearing about it, but nobody cared that at the same timesMessi was scoring goals too, so was David Villa, Higuan, David Silva, need I go on. The English media like to make their players out to be better than they are.

  • @Jack - 2010-04-07 08:43

    HAHA jack you are the loser my friend and obviously very dissapointed at your lack luster team. Rather give credit to the best player in the world at the moment, ok tied best with Rooney at the moment. But did you see the stats of passes completed between the two sides, that tells the entire story for you, Barca plays as a team

  • Kube$ - 2010-04-07 08:56

    Its a young team, we prepearing the guys for next season, jokes aside , in all my time watching footi, i have never seen a team as complete as Barca, the unity the teamwork the talent, breathtaking. @MANU - i think you will see barca in the final, but dont think you will beat them bro...

  • Rocking Chick - 2010-04-07 08:57

    Spoken like a bitter LOSER you are @ Jack. We all watched the game and we saw that Messi scored four beautiful, LEGITIMATE goals... You can't touch him... Arsenal will always be second or third best... They lack maturity...

  • wdl - 2010-04-07 08:58

    Ah Jack what a winker. Sore losser you twit

  • David - 2010-04-07 09:01

    Messi is a living football genius

  • sean - 2010-04-07 09:14

    As a Man U supporter for more 20 years :) I reckon Messi is by far the best player in the world , the most ``complete player`` !

  • Leko - 2010-04-07 09:15

    And to think there were so many missing stars like Ibrahimovic and Puyol. What a Merciless Barcelona!

  • Scaramouche - 2010-04-07 09:22

    An amazing player and two amazing matches over the two legs! Well done to Barca and Arsenal for some top notch entertainment!

  • Queen - 2010-04-07 09:22

    a Barca vs Man U final (Messi vs Shrek Rooney) would be total Ayoba-ness

  • Kube$ - 2010-04-07 09:24

    Really now can you people stop comparing this boy to Rooney,someone said they tied,WTF MAN, am I the only fcken person that sees that they are WORLDs WORLDs apart. OMG. GEES LIKE . And before the MU fans come guns blazing, i am not saying Rooney is not good, HE IS but no FCKEN WAY is he anywhere close to this boy. FCK SAKE....

  • TRUE Red - 2010-04-07 09:34

    For once, i agree with the Professor. A true "great" is not a one or two season wonder - he performs week in, week out, season after season, like Leo. If he has a successful WC, i expect he will replace Zindane & Maradonna as the greatest player's i've seen in my lifetime

  • Kayden - 2010-04-07 09:44

    Who the hell said this boy is tied with that ogre Rooney? Are you nuts. That's just a ridicilous statement and it's obvious you don't know your football. Typical Man. Utd supporter.

  • @Queen - 2010-04-07 09:44

    That was last years final and MU where taught a lesson. Barca vs Inter is going to be good. Then Barca vs Bayern for the final would be as you say "total Ayoba-ness"

  • jakes12 - 2010-04-07 09:45

    you people are crazy lol messi is on another level right now but don't say rooney does not even come close. rooney is good messi is better. and as for the folk saying he a complete player? watch him closely.

  • Deon - 2010-04-07 09:47

    Messi is a wondeful player he has incredible touch, pinpoint accuracy, speed, vision, high work rate, he is a complete package. People say that United are a one man team. The same can be said for Barcelona. Lets hope we have a repeat of last years final so we can get our revenge!!!!. Glory Glory Man United

  • Mpho - 2010-04-07 09:49

    WOW! There's sore losers; and then there's Jack. @Samsam: Like many analyst say, Messi needs a world cup win to be compared to Diego. Phenominal!

  • Big K - 2010-04-07 09:50

    @ Jack, u r right, every small touch and they rolled with pain like little girls!! Nonetheless, they ripped arsenal apart!!! @ Kubes, comparing Rooney to Messi is worlds apart, a striker verses a winger who cuts in, and Messi hardly tracks back to help the team where as Rooney does!! But yes, Messi is a f king god, unbelievable really, he doesnt even need to look, he jus has a radar for the net!! If u ask me, i think he is carrying Barca, Pedro and Bojan had one shot each, thats all, for a striker!!! I'd like to see what happens if Messi gets injured, what will they do then?

  • Liraliwele - 2010-04-07 09:51

    Rooney better than Messi!? In your dream! Rooney is good. Let's just leave it at that. Messi is the most consistent player. Scored 4 hatricks this year already. How many hatricks has Rooney scored? He scored an incredible 30+ goals last season.

  • TIYANI - 2010-04-07 09:58

    what a greate performance,the little mistro ha done it for the best team in europe well done BFC

  • Dean - 2010-04-07 10:01

    @Kube$ hey dude. I'm a huuuuge ManU fan and I don't think that it's just Rooney who's worlds apart from Messi..there is not another football player on this planet who is even close to Messi at the moment. he really is special.

  • Shankly's Kin - 2010-04-07 10:12

    Nuff said Kube$ - different kind of player, nor would I say that he is the complete player (that would mean he knows Total Football and can slot into any position on the pitch) - but he definitely is an amazing attacking player - pleased to be around to witness his exploits. I missed out on guys like Maradonna, Van Basten and the like. But last night was indescribable, that's how awesome he was, the words have not yet been invented to describe the kid. Score should have read "Messi 4 - Ars 1".

  • JustinD - 2010-04-07 10:16

    It's hard to imagine how a team can lose with Messi in the side......absolutely breathtaking in all aspects. He is without any doubt the best footballer of his generation and then some wow wow wow. Arsenal played ok in stages BUT not good enough to shine Barca's boots.

  • chosen1 - 2010-04-07 10:33

    all i cn say is gunners too many mistakes,and and in order to score goals you firstly need possesion which stats showed barca had most of,Gunners were very sloppy with there passing i must say,but barca made them pay with there mistakes but all credit to messi,one wonders if the great game will ever have a player of his calibur grace a soccer pitch again,as he has set the standard very high for someone to be called a great player, but all respect to the gunners for making it this far,they can at least say the best team won on the night..... period

  • rbgguy - 2010-04-07 11:58

    Rooney is like Messi - in Rooney's wet dreams. England have never produced a player that even compares my friends.

  • Barca fan - 2010-04-07 12:19

    yesterday.... match left me speechless and i really wonder if SA players will, make it through the first quater, reasons is.. i watched the match between Pirates and Chiefs on monday, to many stop during the game the players are constantly looking for free kicks and all that nonsense and yesterdays match what i noticed, is that the players both barca and arsenal they go after the ball , the fall and stand up run after the ball to shoot goals, not free kicks, hoping for a miricle for SA Soccer, BUT L Messi is theeee Man!!!! well done

  • Donmega - 2010-04-07 12:31

    There's no doubt about his class.Last night i saw what Maradona said late last year when Argentina was struggling to qualify for the world cup.He said "Messi is good but sometimes he only plays for Messi".Last night he wanted GLORY for himself.Check the replay of the fourth goal and see if it was necessary for him to beat the Arsenal defender or to pass the ball to the screaming Seydou Keita.Lucky for him he scored after the second attempt.

  • Riccardo Gentile - 2010-04-07 12:54 clearly know nothing about soccer. To call Barcelona cheaters. You are a pathetic twat. Name one player in this world who hasn't dived or overreacted from a tackle, they all do it. Honestly, shut your mouth and go complain someone else.

  • @Barca Fan - 2010-04-07 13:27

    @Barca Fan You do know that the budget for one player in Barcelona is more than the budget of many teams in the PSL. So, before you compare, consider that any good player within Chiefs and Pirates would have been snatched up already and would be playing for the top teams denying Chiefs and Pirates of the same standard as Barca or Arsenal. You are comparing apricots to mangoes, boet.

  • kayden - 2010-04-07 13:34

    I'll agree with Jack. There were a few ridicilous calls from the ref. Whenever messi fell, messi got a free kick. I mean this is turning into a sissy sport. Even a big guy like Rafael Marquez was diving all over the arena.

  • CHACKY - 2010-04-07 14:08

    much has been said abt this young, brilliant player Messi, a marvel to watch..the list is endless. Jack is an insane cow to say the least, he is not worth any breath.. we are talking abt stars not critics like you who can`t even kick a ball, u belong in de English media. Hence Bafana moved to Brazil & Germany they were running away from guys like u....the guys are going to do us proud cum WC....Barca is in the league of their own they don`t compromise quality,,,,top class form the entire team!!

  • Trevor - 2010-04-07 14:12

    Messi is too greedy !!!!

  • TRUE Red - 2010-04-07 14:39

    Donmega, although it was late in the game, imagine IF the Gunner's did score - 3-2, then nerves & who knows, might end up 3-3, which would have meant Barca would be out as the Gunner's would have more away goals - sometimes even a team player needs to be a bit greedy & go for it himself, which Leo did, CORRECTLY im my opinion - he secured the result for Barca - that is another reason he is the KING by a long shot - maturity beyond his years !

  • Kube$ - 2010-04-07 14:40

    @KAYDEN AND JACK - I am a Hard Core Gunner, and I will tell you first hand you talking twak. Give credit where its due bro, that barca team is probably the greatest team ever, they are complete, UNITY, TEAMWORK, DISCIPLINE, THE CULTURE AND RESPECT BET THE PLAYERS is PHENOMENAL. I even say better than the Eary Real Madrid team of the 1950s who won all those champs league in a row. This side is insane so stop saying that they cheaters or accusing the ref, they simply outclassed us and at the mom, will outclass anyone, cant wait for the El Classico, who will be the best , Ronaldo or Messi, thats gonna be insane man...

  • Deon - 2010-04-07 14:46

    As a united fan i must admit, Messi is top notch. But to compare him to the greats like Pele, i think is very derespectful to Pele. Messi is an amazing talent and is young but if you compare Pele to Messi at the same age. Pele is head an shoulders better. I do agree that the modern era is more professional but Pele was the youngest every player at the 1958 SWC, Winning 3 SWC from 4 apperances, 1970 Golden Ball, 1120 goals from 1087 games, 12 Goals in World Cups. Come on, lets be fair to BOTH players and not compare them. Many of you have never even seen PELE play,

  • Never Walk Alone - 2010-04-07 15:01

    Messi - SUBLIME TALENT !!! Barca a complete team of talented footballers - will be interesting to see if Real Madrid and poser Ronaldo will match up - RM must be crapping themselves already - as well as any other team about to play against Barca ! Benitez - take note - this is how football SHOULD be played - you twat !!!!

  • Donmega - 2010-04-07 15:05

    True Red,guess you have a point.Just hoping he can play like he's doing for his country during the WC.Starting to feel for Sergio Ramos & co this saturday & the poor Nigerians(Argentina's first opponents in the WC)

  • jose - 2010-04-07 15:25

    wait untill they play Inter u fellas will be singing a diferent tune!

  • george titus - 2010-04-07 15:42

    u can only be as good as your team so u no that whole team is very good