Messi: We'll bounce back

Lionel Messi has insisted he was fit to face Bayern Munich and has vowed to help Barcelona respond to their heavy defeat in Germany.

Last Updated: 24/04/13 at 14:10 Post Comment

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The Spanish giants suffered a surprise 4-0 loss in their first leg of their UEFA Champions League semi-final and are now facing a huge uphill challenge to qualify.

Messi was a peripheral figure at the Allianz Arena and did not look as if he had recovered from the hamstring injury he suffered a just few weeks ago.

But the Argentine said: "I felt good. I was well enough to play. We have to lift ourselves for the second leg and La Liga. We will bounce back.

"They were a lot stronger than us, physically superior. It is a pity what happened but we have to move on."

Midfielder Xavi also remains adamant Barcelona have not given up hope of reaching the Champions League final at Wembley despite the odds being stacked against them.

"We are Barca and we have got to try to get to the final," said the Spaniard. "We need to play a great game but we know at the same time that it is practically impossible."

Xavi paid tribute to a Bayern side who outplayed and outmuscled the 2009 and 2011 Champions League winners like very few have achieved over the past six seasons.

"They were quicker than us and it was like a siege," he said. "We expected it to be like this. They are very strong physically and they were better than us.

"When you make mistakes in the Champions League, you pay the price. They were stronger than us. I do not know why we did not attack well.

"They have extraordinary players like (Arjen) Robben and they just found it too easy to get past us."

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e have the personnel. The trick is keeping them fit. Carrick and Blind have missed large chunks of the season, while the defence has been one muddled mess of intermittent stooges, all coming and going at various intervals thus far. We may be just short of title winning quality, but we're half way through. An injury crisis to either of the top two could change things. Optimistic, yes, but not unrealistic.

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e almost found a new way to lose, just when I thought it was getting boring Giroud does that. Although Arsenal are deservedly called 'soft' the entire midfield is out injured. Still must admit MU are managing to win despite a similar raft of absentees. Think the Gunners have good players but poorly coached.

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