Gerard Pique

Barcelona and Spain Colossus


Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta has praised striker Lionel Messi by saying that he proved to be a real inspiration for the team in the recent quarter-final Champions league match against PSG.

Barcelona came into the second leg match against PSG with a 2-2 aggregate from the first leg. This would have helped the club play out a 0-0 draw, as they would progress on away goals. However, they were extremely shocking in the first half, as PSG completely dominated them by creating a lot of opportunities. They also managed to score a goal, which put them 3-2 on aggregate.

Lionel Messi did not start the match due to a hamstring injury suffered in the first leg. However, he was declared partially fit to play in the match, which led to manager Tito Vilanova naming him on the bench. After seeing his team struggle against the expensively assembled squad of PSG, Vilanova brought on Messi in the second half. He totally changed the game, and they managed to draw the match 1-1. It was enough to see Barcelona progress into the semifinals of the competition on away goals. After the match, midfielder Iniesta admitted that the team relies heavily upon Messi.
However, Messi has been one of the level-headed and down-to-earth footballers in the world despite his status as one of the best in the world.

“In Leo we are talking about the best player in the world and when things are not going well you have to use him. Even if he is half lame, his presence on the pitch is enough to lift us and our play in general,” said Pique. “It feels like it’s a duel between the Spanish and German leagues and I really have no preference. We can make it through whether we are playing poorly or playing well,” said the club’s sporting director, Andoni Zubizarreta.