Chelsea vs Barcelona
Next Tuesday night in the Champions League, all eyes will be on Stamford Bridge.
Antonio Conte’s Chelsea face the games of their season as the Blues face Barcelona in the Champions League.
Can Chelsea knock Barcelona out of their two-legged last-16 tie?
Leo Messi advised to miss Barcelona matches
A week before Leo Messi and company arrived in the English capital, Barcelona’s best player has been told to rest.
That instruction has come from his international federation – from Argentina’s national football association president Claudio Tapia.
In an interview with TyC Sports, Tapia has confirmed he’s spoken to Messi about resting in the final stretch of the season:
I hope all the players arrive in the level they are at the moment. Sergio Aguero is playing outstanding right now and Lionel Messi is always at the top of his game.
That’s vital for the directors and the coaching staff. We have spoken to Messi about taking care of himself and about playing less for Barcelona.
With Messi, we spoke about looking after him, playing less than he has, and if there are games that don’t merit Messi to be present, then for him not to play in order to take care of himself a bit more I think that’s good.
So will Messi miss the Chelsea game? That’s highly unlikely.
While Tapia obviously wants Messi in the best condition before the 2018 World Cup, Barcelona will field their star player at the business end of the season.
Indeed, Messi has played in all 23 La Liga matches for the Catalans this season.
He was benched against Espanyol in the derby, but he came on in the second half in the 1-1-1 draw.
In fact Messi has only been dropped for three Copa del Rey matches all season.