Date:27th May 2011 at 7:33pm
Written by:
Lionel Messi

Not the be all and end all for tomorrow's game

If Barcelona don’t win the Champions League on Saturday night this Lionel Messi bloke is going to have a lot to answer for.

Every article I read, every interview I hear seems to discard any chance of Manchester United beating Barcelona. The reason behind the majority of these claims appears to be one man, one very skilful man, one man with 52 goals this season. But all the same, it’s just one man.

I’m not going to argue Messi is not the best player in the world at the moment as I fully agree with everyone else that he may well be, and is certainly somewhere up at the top at the very least. It took the patience of 76 minutes but Messi eventually ripped Real Madrid apart in the two sides’ first leg semi-final clash, and then did it again before the 90 minutes was up. His success rate this year has been near immaculate with such a high tally of goals scored. However best player or not, the saying still goes “There is no ‘I’ in team”.

Of course I acknowledge the fact Barcelona have an array of talent and other world-class players alongside Messi. I am not debating whether or not Barcelona are actually the best team in the world or not though. I am questioning the fact that many people, so called professionals and average Joes alike, are certain Barcelona will win because they have Messi.

Leave Messi in the team and take away Xavi, Iniesta, Busquets and Villa and I would not see Barcelona as half the threat they are now. Having these players around him allows Messi to play his own game and still have the backing of other world beaters. Without them you would see a different Messi, struggling for space and the ball. To put a whole Champions League’s final on the man’s shoulders is ridiculous.

In the 2009 Champions League final United had Cristiano Ronaldo in their line up to face Barcelona. Ronaldo, the one man who many would see as being able to equate to Messi. One man, who at the time was also in great form, scoring goals for fun. However that night United were trampled by Barcelona with Ronaldo making little impact.

I am not trying to settle the matter of who is the best team in the world. Whilst Barcelona are obvious contenders for that spot I can’t help but think many are rejecting any challenge from United because of Barca’s individuals. The stance seems to be that Lionel Messi makes the world’s best team. However United don’t so much have a team of world-class individuals, more a world-class team. The names Darren Fletcher and Michael Carrick may not quite match the global magnitude of Xavi and Iniesta. Nor would Park Ji-Sung fetch a transfer fee as hefty as Pedro would. But this is not the point.

There is no denying Barcelona have a team of amazing players, many of whom would walk in to any other team on the planet. Nevertheless their opponents on Saturday night have an amazing team. A team of players who all work so well together. A team which has been called the worst United team in a long time, reflected in the fact they could only win the English Premier League by 9 points this season.

Saturday’s monumental match is a difficult one to call but one thing is for sure. Lionel Messi will not single handedly beat a world class team and win the Champions League.

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11 responses to “Lionel Messi Is Not The Best Team in the World”

  1. Steve says:

    Well done… you idiot

  2. john says:

    very well said cuz if u think about it when he plays for argentina he doesnt play like the barca messi. he never gets time on the ball for argentina he doesnt score goals for fun. in barca becase they have ineista and xavi they make him look like his untouchable when actually he is. world cup proves it he had a a good season at barca he won the la liga when it comes to the world cup he did nothing couldnt even score a goal. if barca ever played a team like real mdrid or manu without messi they would get destoyed.

  3. brian says:

    Well even if they don’t win Messi has nothing to answer to !! Yes Messi will find it a lot harder without Xavi and Iniesta but that why football is a team game..having said that Messi deserves all of this praise because he is the only player right now who can change the direction of the game.Was Xavi and Iniesta involve in his second goal against Real Madrid in UCL semi final ? No.Bousquets gave the ball to him(easiest assist everr i would say) and from there Messi did it all by himself…

    So even if they dont win Messi has nothing to prove mate !!! Besides lets not forget he is just 23 years old

    • Tom Daniel says:

      I was saying he would have a lot to answer for because so many have built it up so the whole final seems to rest on him, not literally saying losing would mean he was no good. Anyone who has any interest in football would agree he is one of the best players, most probably the best player in the world, me included. Being a quality player he does have the ability to run through a whole defence and score, I’m not suggesting all his goals are poacher’s goals. However one of the most astounding stats about Barca is that in the Champions League they have averaged 74.3% possession in their matches. This is something the whole team is instrumental in, particularly Xavi, and this play draws the opposition in and allows Messi to get into positions where he can do the rest. I am not questioning whether Messi is excellent, I am questioning whether it is right to say he will win the final and to put so much on him. Even if he rips United open and takes on 5 players before scoring for the winning goal he will not have won the final single handedly. I am simply questioning this and the fact a United team which despite what others have said have been consistently strong from the start to finish of matches to get results don’t seem to have been given a chance.

  4. brian says:

    To be honest i think this is a stupid and poor article but i feel i need to say something !!!

  5. brian says:

    No one can single handely win a match because its a team play..having said that Messi’s performance against Real Madrid UCL semi final or against Arsenal 4-1 thumping or Diego Maradona’s performance against England were the closest performance you can call,’SINGLEHANDEDLY’ in football !!!

    If you look at Messi’s second goal..All he needs was Bousquest to chip the ball over him almost in the center of the field and from there it was all Messi..thats why the praising and all credits are deserved…Did you ever see Pele (as good scorer as he was) score that kind of goal ? I THINK NOT !!!

    • Tom Daniel says:

      That’s what I’m saying, it is a team game and Messi’s excellent team allow him to play the way he does. Messi would still be great without them but with them he is even better and they all play massive parts in the results Barca get. Yes Messi does get some goals from running from the half way line past everyone and that is an unbelievable skill but the majority of the time the players behind him allow him to do things like that. I am taking no praise away from Messi, I actually said that, what I’m saying is that far too much is being put on him.

  6. the rover says:

    poor article… just shows jelousy! what point are you trying to get at? going on about how barcelona wouldnt be the same tea with out Xavi, Iniesta, Busquets and Villa (just state the obvious youve just taken half the team away). You can say that about any team ie Man United, take rooney, hernandez, berbatov and nani out the team, and united arnt half the team! this article could be apllied to any football team what so ever! its just like saying take Hamiltons formula one car.. take off the tyres, the steering wheel and the engine, then they have no chance! bye

    • Tom Daniel says:

      That was the point I was making. So many have been putting the whole match on Messi when actually I’d say the key tonight would be Xavi, Busquets and Iniesta. The article is more about what expectations have been put on Messi and the fact no one else in the team is being acknowledged rather than being about Barcelona. I was making the point of what difference it would make to Barcelona taking those players away, I was making the point of what difference it would make to the role Messi played. There was no jealousy at all in this article, I acknowledged how good Messi and Barcelona are along with United as well. I’m not really sure who I’m suppose to be jealous of.

      • Tom Daniel says:

        sorry I mean I wasn’t making the point of what difference it would make to Barcelona taking those players away, I was making the point of what difference it would make to the role Messi played.

  7. brian says:

    Well problem solved.Xavi was great so was Iniesta,Villa,Pedro,Bousquest.Mach,Abidal,Pique and alves as was Messi…and yes Messi Scored !!!