Lionel Messi insists he could do it on a wet, windy, Wednesday night at the Brittania, reveals Guillem Balague
One of the biggest debates in football has finally been settled. Lionel Messi feels that he could perform to his best in the attritional environs of the Brittania Stadium, home of Stoke City. Noted Spanish journalist, Guillem Balague made the revelation in an interview with Messi’s former Barcelona teammate, Bojan Krkic, who is now one of Stoke City’s lynchpins.
In an interview with Sky Sports’ Revista de La Liga, Balague asked Bojan his opinion on whether Messi could ‘play on a cold, winter Wednesday night at Stoke’. To which Bojan could only laugh and respond with wholehearted agreement, saying “Messi can do it! I understand that teams don't like to come to the Britannia Stadium, especially in winter with the wind, the cold.
“We're a strong team. It's not easy. But I try to enjoy it and I try to improve my football in that situation.”
Balague then went on to make the revelation, saying “I asked Messi about that. He said, 'Those people that say that should realise I played in awful conditions in Rosario when I was 11 years old, with glass on the pitch, with holes and everything,' … And he also played good.”
Given that the Brittania is unlikely to have glass and holes on the pitch, it is safe to say that Lionel Messi is probably correct in his assertion that he could perform in the worst conditions that the Brittania could throw at him. Bojan agrees with the view that Messi could succeed, saying “Of course. If he came to the Britannia he will also play good.”
Stoke playing Barcelona at the Brittania could become a reality
Stoke City are currently seventh in the Premier League table on 33 points, but are just 6 points behind Tottenham Hotspur in fourth. Given the state of unpredictablity that is the current Premier League season, it is not too far-fetched to say that Stoke could qualify for the Champions League and draw Barcelona in the future.
Bojan underlined Stoke City’s ambitions for the same, saying “We have to be honest. I think Champions League is of course one target. It has to be because you have to be ambitious. Five years ago you could never imagine the side playing football (in the style we do now). Why not in two or three years Stoke City in the Champions League?”
“Look this year at Leicester. Maybe they are going to win the Premier League. The football each year is more … you can beat whoever. You have to be ambitious.”