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Sunday 4 December 2016

Luis Enrique: 'Messi can do what he did to Bayern in any game'

Barca coach rubbishes Juve claim

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi
Luis Enrique

Barcelona coach Luis Enrique has rubbished suggestions that an Italian defence would not have allowed Lionel Messi to score the breathtaking goal that inspired his team's King's Cup triumph against Athletic Bilbao.

Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini, who will be up against Messi in Saturday's Champions League final in Berlin, claimed this week that he would not have scored the goal against better opposition.

"I have no doubt that he could have scored that goal against any team in the world," Luis Enrique told a news conference.

In a dazzling run, Messi beat four players before hitting the opener with a clinical finish.

Chiellini says tighter defending would have stopped the Argentine.

"Of course it was a great goal but I don't think he would have scored it in Italy where defending is much better than in Spain," the told Marca on Tuesday.

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Luis Enrique

"In La Liga they play a lot better than in Italian football but they also defend a lot worse."

With the La Liga title also secured Barca are looking for a repeat of their 2009 success by winning the treble.

Messi has been in blistering form during the second half of the season and Luis Enrique reaffirmed his belief that he is the best ever but added that he has benefited from coming through the Barca academy and playing for the team.

"There is no doubt that he is the best in the history of the game.

"But since he arrived here he has adapted to a style of play that works perfectly for him and he is surrounded by great players that have a way of playing that makes being successful easier," Luis Enrique said.

"If Messi was playing for another team then he would still be the best but I think here Barca made it easier for him to show his potential."

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