Players can fight for Messi's shirt if they win, says Van Bommel

Mark van Bommel has urged his players to remain professional and not be distracted by trying to get their hands on Lionel Messi's shirt.

Published : Sep 18, 2018 07:45 IST

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi
Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi

PSV coach Mark van Bommel has no issues with his players fighting it out for Lionel Messi’s shirt – as long as they get a positive result against Barcelona. 

The Eredivisie champion gets its Group B campaign underway on Tuesday with a daunting trip to the Catalan giant, which has enjoyed a 100 per cent start to the season. 

Van Bommel - who spent 2005-06 with Barca - has demanded that his players remain professional and only think about getting their hands on Messi's shirt at the end of the game. 

"If tomorrow we get a good result I don't care if they fight for Messi's shirt," he told a news conference.

"That is part of being a professional, to always be concentrating. I know they will ask him for the shirt, but they shouldn't do it at half-time."

Van Bommel returns to Camp Nou but, while there are few familiar faces remaining, he hailed former team-mate Messi.

"Only Leo remains in the team from my year here," the PSV boss added. "It was in 2005 and you could see he would be one of the greatest.

"I think he is still the best in the world despite not winning the Ballon d'Or."

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