UCL: ‘Barcelona Not As Good As They Were’

Former Red Devil Paul Scholes has admitted that Manchester United face an uphill task in stopping Lionel Messi and Co, even though Barcelona are considered to be not “as good as they were”.

Manchester United are set for their quarterfinal clash against La Liga giants Barcelona this week, and It could be argued that they have been handed the toughest of draws.

Scholes, however believes that this star-studded Barcelona side headed by five-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi have weaknesses outside of their lethal attacking force.

Speaking to Premier League Productions on the challenge facing the current Old Trafford side: “I don’t think Barcelona are as good as they were.

“When we went into it, we knew if we got 25 per cent possession we’d be happy.

“It was all about concentration. So many quality players, Messi, Xavi, [Andres] Iniesta of that era.

“I don’t think they have that many players as good as them but still they’ve got some real quality.

“Can you keep Messi quiet? Not sure you can. Suarez as well.

“I think that’s gone. If we were looking at that then Barca would have the advantage from what’s happened in the past.

“I don’t think many people expect United to go through this tie so that could help them a bit.

“They’ve got some quality, United, some really good forward players.

“It’s just at the other end, can they stop them scoring goals? Especially at Old Trafford.”

United will be hoping to keep Barcelona’s fearsome attacking unit quiet as they play host to the Catalans on Wednesday.