As the Champions League Round of 16 clash against Chelsea draws near, Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has pointed at another English side – Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City – as the team to watch, along with Paris Saint-Germain.
“Manchester City are one of the strongest teams in the world at the moment,” the Argentina attacker said. “The same goes for PSG.
“However, there’s a lot of football still to play and I don’t rule out Real Madrid yet as they have a lot of quality and experience. Then there’s Bayern Munich, another great team who will fight till the end. But right now, City and PSG are the best.”
Messi also reflected on his side’s blistering start to the season where they remained unbeaten in La Liga after 20 games and claims the team is much more balanced despite the summer departure of Neymar to PSG.
Barca lost Neymar in the off-season after the French giants sensationally activated his €222million release clause in August.
“Without Neymar we are more balanced,” Messi told World Soccer.
“His departure meant a change in our way of playing, we lost a lot of attacking potential, but it helped in the defensive sense.
“We are currently very well armed in the midfield; this makes us stronger in defence.”
Neymar was a key member of Barca’s famed ‘MSN’ forward trio, alongside Messi and Luis Suarez, helping the club to two LaLiga titles and the Champions League among others.