Barcelona manager, Ernesto Valverde has hailed Argentinian superstar, Lionel Messi, claiming that the striker always gets the club out of difficult situations by his performances on the pitch.
Messi was once again the standout star for the Catalan giants against Manchester United in the second leg of the quarter-finals of the Champions League, scoring twice in the first-half to settle to inspire them to a 3-0 win on the night and 4-0 win on aggregate over two legs.
“Messi always gets us out of trouble and we’re not going to apologise for having him. Leo always turns up in the important games, not just in the big moments but throughout the whole game. He is always capable of scoring but he also drives the team’s attack," Valverde said as quoted by Reuters.
Lionel Messi has now scored 45 goals in each of his last two seasons:— Squawka Football (@Squawka) April 16, 2019
2017/18: 54 games, 45 goals
2018/19: 42 games, 45 goals
Oh lord. pic.twitter.com/XWovmQHZct
The 55-year-old was also pleased to finally go past the quarter-final stage after three successive last-eight exits, with their defeat at the hands of AS Roma last season particularly painful as they had won the first leg 4-1.
“We had a lot of hope for this tie, it was a long time since we have been in the semi-finals and we had a very painful defeat last year. You never know what can happen in football, they [United] have a very good team and they could have caused us problems, so we made sure we were focussed and played with intensity so we would make it through.”
The Catalan giants will hope that Messi continues his good run in the last-four as they look to win their first UCL title since 2015.