Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola, speaking ahead of his side’s match against Paris Saint-Germain, said we may never see the likes of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo again.
The two players, both in their late 30s, continue to dominate at the highest level and break many records and fill many cupboards between them. Guardiola obviously knows Messi well, but on Wednesday he will be part of the opposition, and this season he has also faced Ronaldo.
In his pre-match press conference in preparation for the game at the Etihad, the Catalan coach was asked if he expected to see such a duopoly again.
“I don’t think it will [happen] as the actions of these two guys will be hard to imitate,” Guardiola said.
“Maybe I’ll see you but I don’t think it will happen – to score this number of goals, the number of trophies we have won.
“It’s very difficult. I think it’s unique in history to get two players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi doing what they did.”
Few people know Lionel Messi’s abilities as much as Pep Guardiola, but that doesn’t mean he knows how to block him, as he admitted.
“It’s very difficult and sometimes when he has the ball he doesn’t know what he’s going to do – so imagine you have to know what he’s going to do,” Guardiola said.
“I can’t tell the players what Lionel Messi is going to do, but hey, it happened with Neymar and Mbappe, and Di Maria, and all the top players in the team. Every player can be a perfect star. For any team in the world. and four are in the same group.
“But I’m still happy and happy that [Lionel Messi] is still playing, at the level he plays and the level, so it would be great to deal with him.”
Manchester City will face PSG at the Etihad on Wednesday.