Sevilla don't fear Messi or Barca – Kjaer

Sevilla heads to Camp Nou with no fear ahead of its showdown against Lionel Messi's Barcelona, Simon Kjaer told Omnisport.

Published : Oct 17, 2018 15:46 IST

Barcelona captain Lionel Messi (L) with team-mate Luis Suarez (R)
Barcelona captain Lionel Messi (L) with team-mate Luis Suarez (R)

Barcelona captain Lionel Messi (L) with team-mate Luis Suarez (R)

Simon Kjaer says LaLiga leader Sevilla does not fear Lionel Messi or Barcelona ahead of Saturday's top-of-the-table clash.

Sevilla travels to Camp Nou this weekend with a one-point lead ahead of reigning champion Barcelona after eight matches.

Only Barca has scored more goals than Sevilla this season, with Kjaer's side enjoying a remarkable start to 2018-19 thanks to five wins – including a stunning 3-0 victory over Real Madrid last month.

Barca captain Messi has hit the ground running this term with six LaLiga goals and 11 in all competitions but Kjaer and Sevilla do not fear the five-time Ballon d'Or winner or his team-mates as they prepare to take the game to the holder.

"Are there any more words in the world to use to describe Messi? He is simply a fantastic player, and when he hits his best level, it is extremely difficult to stop him," Kjaer told Omnisport.

"You can't man-mark Messi, because Barcelona have so many other great players that they will just take advantage of the extra space you leave for them. You have to defend collectively against Messi and reduce the spaces he can work in - and that way try to make sure that he will not have his best game against you.

"Again, it is a pleasure - and to me basically the best thing in football - to play against the greatest teams and the greatest players. And try to beat them."

Sevilla has not beaten Barca since 2015 – Pablo Machin's men coming off consecutive defeats to the Catalan giant in the Supercopa de Espana (2-1) and Copa del Rey final (5-0).

Not since 2010 has Sevilla beaten Barca at Camp Nou – that rare away success coming in the Copa del Rey during Pep Guardiola's tenure.

"You can't go to Camp Nou with fear in your mind, because then you will get destroyed," Denmark captain Kjaer added. "You have to believe in yourself as a team - believe in the way you play football. So no, we don't fear them but obviously we respect them as one of the greatest teams in the world.

"Having said that, it is our job to make sure that they don't reach their maximum level against us. And that we reach ours. You have to make Barca uncomfortable and challenge them with your game plan, so that they have to focus on playing both ways - and not only attacking the opponent. Parking the bus is not an option at Camp Nou. Then you will lose nine out of 10 times."

Sign in to unlock all user benefits
  • Get notified on top games and events
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign up / manage to our newsletters with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early bird access to discounts & offers to our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide to our community guidelines for posting your comment