By 90Min
February 21, 2018

Lionel Messi managed to finally break his Chelsea curse by scoring for the first time in nine Champions League games against the Blues. 

A mistake from the Chelsea defence allowed Barcelona to salvage a draw at Stamford Bridge after going 1-0 down thanks to a superb low effort from Willan. Andres Iniesta's cut-back to find Messi at the edge of the box gave Barce a crucial away goal. 

Before this game, Chelsea had been one of the few teams to elude Messi's goal-scoring prowess. This begs the question, just how do you stop Lionel Messi?

Rio Ferdinand, on punditry duty for BT Sport, seemed to have one light-hearted suggestion. Speaking hours before kick-off, the former Manchester United defender talked about the difficulty of trying to stop the Argentine. 

So when asked how he would stop Messi, Ferdinand responded (via Give Me Sport): "I was in a team that tried it a couple of times and it didn't come off."

"Other than GBH [Grievous bodily harm], I don't know."

The 30-year-old does not seem to be dwindling with age as Messi netted his 28th goal of the season with the equaliser against Chelsea. Messi is the top goalscorer in La Liga this term with 20, where Barcelona are also in fine form. The Catalan giants are unbeaten in the league this season and are seven points clear at the top.  

(You may also be interested in Antonio Conte Defends Decision to Start Young Defender Against Barcelona Despite Error in Equaliser)

Rio continued, "He's one of, if not the, best player in the world... Ever! There's no individual that can deal with him. It's a team effort."

"You've got to have two or three players around to stop him getting the ball and then when he gets the ball you've got to have people on him."

Chelsea will travel to Camp Nou on the 14th March for the second-leg of this Champions League tie. Needing an away goal, the Blues will have to be at their best at both ends of the pitch to ensure their progression to the quarter-finals.

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