Rio Ferdinand claims Messi was ‘unplayable’ in the Champions League final

Pep Guardiola Messi

Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand talks about his experience in the Champions League final against Lionel Messi.

Messi was ‘unplayable’ in Champions League final claims Ferdinand

Lionel Messi is one of the greatest football player the world has witnessed. The seven-time Ballon D’or winner has been a nightmare to defenders including Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand.

Ferdinand speaking to BBC Sport recalled his time with the Argentine forward in the Champions League final.

He said,

“Rome, that one we could have and should have won maybe. When Messi scores the header… in the Premier League, against some players, or even in the Champions League against some players, no disrespect, I’ve gambled on their lack of ability to be able to get the ball past me.” 

“I’ve done that in the Champions League final and the problem was the person on the ball was Xavi, you’ve got to know the players you’re dealing with.”

He put it on for Messi, who scored an outrageous header really. He hasn’t scored many of them in his career, but he has done it in the big moment. That separates the good from the great.”

Ferdinand explained what was different in Messi’s gameplay in Rome,

“We had played against him before and we had locked him down. But this was a different Messi. This was Messi with more freedom to run around and be central, whereas before he was really stuck wide, so you could pin him down a bit.”

“Still great, but when he was allowed that freedom to be able to move and pop anywhere and surprise you. He was unplayable, like ridiculous.”

He added,

“Prime time Lionel Messi, unplayable!”

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