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Lionel Messi News: Former Arsenal star Alex Scott questions Barcelona captain's ability to get into the current Manchester City team

ANALYST
News
476   //    12 Aug 2019, 11:06 IST

FIFA Ballon d'Or Gala 2010
FIFA Ballon d'Or Gala 2010

What's the story?

Former Arsenal star and current Sky Sports pundit Alex Scott has questioned Lionel Messi's ability to get into Pep Guardiola's current Manchester City team, suggesting that the Barcelona captain would not be able to maintain the intensity required to play a pressing game high up the pitch.

In case you didn't know...

Messi played in a high press under Guardiola at Barcelona, a system widely regarded as one of the best in the history of the game, owing to the unprecedented success the Catalan giants enjoyed between 2008 and 2012.

However, the 32-year-old has now changed his game to suit his age and played more of a free role for the Blaugrana in the last few years.

The Argentina international has still proven to be influential, scoring 51 goals in all competitions for the Spanish champions last season alone.

Meanwhile, Manchester City kicked off their defense of the Premier League title with a thumping 5-0 win over West Ham United on Saturday.

The heart of the matter

City were not at their best during their Premier League opener but still gave fans a lot to shout about.

Scott, who co-hosted Sky Sports' Goals on Sunday, was left wondering if Messi could get a place in Guardiola's current starting XI suggesting that the manager would demand aggressive pressing from him.

She said on Twitter (via Mirror Football), "Would today’s Messi fit into the Manchester City Team? Of course, he could. But the point on the show, which I thought would be interesting to start a debate was - Would Pep have to change City’s high-intensity style of play to fit Messi in? And if so, would he?"

A fan responded by saying, "Messi played in a high press Barcelona team", to which he replied, "Yes he did, Messi game like Ronaldo’s has evolved over the years with age... So I just think it’s super interesting to discuss the topic. It’s good to debate right?"

What's next?

Messi will miss out Barcelona's LaLiga opener against Athletic Bilbao on Friday, while Manchester City are next scheduled to face Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League on Saturday.

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