Camp Nou

Next Game

Barcelona v Villarreal

Sunday, 01 February 2015, 20:00

Spanish Primera BBVA

Vicente Calderon

Last Game

A Madrid 2 - 3 Barcelona

Wednesday, 28 January 2015, 20:00

Copa del Rey Quarter Final

Messi: Barca back to our best

Lionel Messi hailed under-fire Barcelona as back to their best as they saw off Manchester City to reach the quarter-finals of the Champions League and keep alive their hopes of the treble.

Last Updated: 13/03/14 at 10:43 Post Comment

Lionel Messi: Happy with Barca's display against Manchester City

Lionel Messi: Happy with Barca's display against Manchester City

Critics had rounded on Barca and their coach Gerardo Martino after the reigning champions suffered three defeats in six Primera Division matches, with the latest - a shock 1-0 reverse at lowly Real Valladolid on Saturday - seeing them fall four points behind arch rivals Real Madrid in the title race.

That loss came four days before Barca's Champions League last-16 second leg against City and would have given the English side increased hope they might be able to overturn their 2-0 deficit from the home leg.

However, there would be no fairytale recovery from City as Barca earned a 2-1 win on the night to progress through to the last eight 4-1 on aggregate.

And Messi, who was on the scoresheet along with Dani Alves - the same scorers as in the first leg, believes his side showed just what they are made of in Wednesday's match.

He said: "We were coming off two very serious setbacks away from home (at Real Sociedad and Valladolid), but more so for the performances than for the results.

"Here we've returned to be the Barcelona that we want, that the fans expect."

Messi also rubbished suggestions Barca's Primera Division title hopes have been sunk by their recent poor form, pointing out there are still 11 games to go - including a clash with leaders Madrid.

"I don't know if the criticism was exaggerated or not. We're the first to be self-critical and we know we haven't done things well, we know when we've done badly," said the Argentina ace, whose side are also through to the Copa del Rey final.

"We lost the opportunity to continue being close to Real Madrid, but the league isn't lost whatsoever. There's a long way to go."

Barca defender Alves echoed those thoughts, saying on his club's official website: "We're very happy to go on to the next round. When things aren't going well it's normal for there to be criticisms.

"Besides the goal I'm happy with how the team played, we always respond. There's only one path to follow. We had a slip, but we're moving forward."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

T

he uber commercialisation of the 90s has led to the point where this overly familar, try hard, jolly hockey sticks type fronts up a major football match on a weekly basis. Unlike the great presenters of yesteryear, I doubt he would even recognise the scent of Brut.

mufc phil
Football On TV: Jake Humphrey

H

opefully Jose turns up to the game wearing a T-Shirt with Costa's face on, that's the classy thing to do in these situations right?

Petulant_Radish
Costa loses appeal against ban

C

onfirmed. Nick Miller is a douche bag. Lazy, incoherent rant is what this article should be titled. And for the editor to have the temerity to pass this as acceptable writing is shocking. Ah well, anything for clicks right? You got mine. Well done. Your mother must be proud.

poolshortsdown
Gerrard Constantly Searching For That Final Hurrah

Footer 365

Les Hutchison's takeover of Motherwell has been ratified

Lanarkshire businessman Les Hutchison has completed his takeover of Scottish Premiership club Motherwell.

Mark Hughes in preliminary talks over new contract at Stoke City

Mark Hughes has revealed preliminary talks over him extending his stay as Stoke City manager are underway.

Cristiano Ronaldo admits he made a mistake against Cordoba, says Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti

Cristiano Ronaldo knows he made a mistake against Cordoba and accepts his two-game ban, according to Carlo Ancelotti.

Mail Box

'Costa Is A Bad Man. Suarez Is Not'

That's quite some claim. And yes, unfortunately we are still talking about this. We also have mails on Ronaldinho, possible replacements for Yaya Toure and more...

Red Mist Better Than Calculated Costa?

Hmmm. We're not sure about this argument - one Mailbox says Luis Suarez is easier to forgive because he is a little loco. We also have mails on Studge and more...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company