“He could take you either way” – Chelsea legend Frank Lampard names toughest opponent he 'couldn’t get near'

Chelsea's Frank Lampard has said that former Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta is the toughest opponent he ever faced.
Chelsea's Frank Lampard has said that former Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta is the toughest opponent he ever faced.

Frank Lampard has said that Barcelona legend Andres Iniesta is the toughest opponent he faced during his playing career.

The former Chelsea manager and player appeared in an interview sponsored by SkyBet. When asked to make a pick between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, Lampard said that he would give the former an edge, on current form.

Frank Lampard was also asked about the toughest opponent he ever faced. Instead of choosing one of Messi and Ronaldo, he gave a surprising response, saying:

“Iniesta (was the toughest opponent I ever faced). He could go either way on you. Not many midfield players who play in that central area, can take you on, make a pass and run (at the same time).

(Timestamp: 0:18)


During his illustrious career, Lampard came up against a plethora of great players. However, he chose the Barcelona legend as the one he struggled the most against, explaining:

I’ve played great players, Stevie G physically brilliant. But some of the times he (Iniesta) would open up, and he could take you either way and then you couldn’t get near him.

Frank Lampard's Chelsea had some memorable clashes with Andres Iniesta's Barcelona

Under legendary manager Pep Guardiola, Barcelona were the best team in club football in the late 2000s and early 2010s.

Andres Iniesta was among a handful of Barcelona legends who thrived under Pep Guardiola, and also after the latter left. Some of the other notable players in that Barcelona team were Carles Puyol, Lionel Messi and Xavi Hernandez. The latter has now returned to the club as their new manager.

Meanwhile, Frank Lampard's Chelsea enjoyed a decent run against that star-studded Barcelona team.

Chelsea have played Barcelona 12 times in the Champions League this century. They have won thrice, lost thrice and drawn six of those games. Lampard played Barcelona 11 times, with his final two appearances coming for Manchester City.

Chelsea and Barcelona were famously involved in multiple high-octane Champions League clashes during the first two decades of the 21st century. Barcelona came up trumps in their last clash in the 2017-18 Champions League Round of 16.

Blues fans will remember the infamous 2009 semi-final second leg against Barcelona as a game they should have won. However, Frank Lampard's Chelsea beat the Blaugrana in the semi-finals en route to their first victory in the competition in 2012.

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Edited by Bhargav
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