Rival manager gives up one day before he faces Lionel Messi

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© Getty Images

Rival manager gives up one day before he faces Lionel Messi

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SportsCafe Desk


Valencia coach Cesare Prandelli has admitted, ahead of their clash with Barcelona on Saturday, that there is “no formula” to stop Lionel Messi and said he will “sleep well tonight”. Messi came back from injury and scored a hat-trick in their 4-0 demolition of EPL title contenders Manchester City.

Former Italy coach Prandelli's recent move to Valencia got off to a good start as he has moved them clear of the relegation zone with a 2-1 win over Sporting Gijon. However, the struggling six-times La Liga champions will face the impossible task of lining up against Lionel Messi and his Barcelona side today.

Prandelli appears to have come to terms with reality ahead of the match.

"I will sleep very well because I know there is no formula to stop Messi, he is magnificent," Prandelli told a news conference on Friday.

"Messi is fantasy football, he is what every child dreams about, because he is proof that when you have character, determination and talent you can make history. All the children in the world want to be Messi and I'm proud to face him."

"We'll need to maintain concentration throughout the game and be organised tactically. Whenever we lose the ball we need to press Barca quickly," Prandelli added.

"When you face Barcelona you know you're going to suffer, but in certain moments of the game we have to know how to make them suffer."

Barcelona, however, have not been at their marauding best this season in Messi absence due to injury and are currently fourth in the La Liga standings on 16 points - two behind leaders Atletico Madrid.

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