Messi: The Champions League is the icing on the cake

Ruben Holloway
October 4, 2018

It was a near faultless performance from the Argentine but Pochettino was happy with how Spurs dealt with him in the first half although conceded he was hard to stop as the game developed.

The home team were somehow still alive until stoppage time when Messi completed the scoring.

By the time Jordi Alba virtually cut the ball back from the byline, Messi had darted into the box and both Coutinho and Suarez left it for the five-time world player of the year to finish. Not one. In the second half, with a lot of space, it is unbelievable how he runs.

Yet Tottenham fell behind after returning goalkeeper Lloris, playing for the first time since being convicted for drink driving, made an bad mistake for Barcelona's opener by rushing out of his goal while full-back Kieran Trippier was also deceived by Messi's brilliant pass in the build-up.

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After Tottenham striker Harry Kane pulled one back in the 52nd minute, Messi started and completed the move four minutes later that restored Barcelona's two-goal lead. The Catalan side doubled their lead in the 28th minute, Rakitic firing a superb volley in off the post after good work from Messi and Coutinho down Spurs' right. Not one. Of course, he's the best player in the world but come on, in the first half we conceded in the first minute.

Tottenham's fatigue is largely down to the World Cup exertions of many of Pochettino's players, but also a result of the lack of new additions during the summer.

Messi's response according to the report was to attack Barcelona's defense stating that they are conceding too many goals this season.

"We got off to a great start last season, beating Dortmund at home".

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Messi, 31, was applauded off by both sets of fans after an absorbing advert for the Champions League which left Barça joint top of the group on six points with Inter Milan.

Just look at this thunderbolt of a strike from the Croatian midfielder. Yet, Spurs had chances and took two of them, and they showed real desire to try and drag themselves back into the game. It will be tough because they are must-win games.

Losing Eriksen, Alli, Mousa Dembele and Jan Vertonghen through injury ahead of such a big night was a cruel blow for Pochettino.

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If it's from Ed Woodward (the chief executive) to Mourinho and then Mourinho to his players, the place just looks unstable. The players brought in - I'd question if they're good enough. "He is a special character", Mourinho said.


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