Football

Barcelona news LIVE updates: Chelsea Champions League latest; SHOCK Lionel Messi request

Barcelona news LIVE updates: All the latest from the Nou Camp including…

Tuesday, February 13

Messi discovery

18:15: Real Madrid are reportedly planning to speak to Neymar’s representatives this week when they face Paris Saint-Germain and Lionel Messi has got wind of those talks.

According to transfer rumours specialists Don Balon, contact between Real and Neymar’s entourage has been ongoing all season.

But Florentino Perez wants to make progress this week with his club set to face Neymar’s side in the Champions League last-16.

The Real president apparently sees Wednesday night’s showdown as the perfect opportunity to get in a room with Neymar’s representatives, including his dad.

Morata makes surprise claim

18:00: Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata is not exactly full of confidence going up against Lionel Messi and Barcelona in the Champions League.

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has faced Chelsea eight times in his career and is still yet to score – his worst record against any club – despite having 29 shots.

And instead of trying to work out how the Argentine star can be stopped, Morata looks to already be admitting defeat when it comes to trying to find a way to stop him.

“Messi can’t be stopped,” the Spain striker told Movistar+.

“If we can get a good result here, we have to play a defensive game with spaces and try to bother them as much as possible.”

Messi told to play less

17:10: Barcelona star Lionel Messi has been told to play fewer games ahead of the World Cup by Argentine Football Association president Claudio Tapia.

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Messi, 30, will be expected to play a pivotal role as Barcelona chase a treble at home and in Europe.

But Tapia has revealed he wants the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to be rested more, so he will be fresh for Argentina’s World Cup campaign.

“I hope all the players arrive at the level they are,” Tapia told Argentine outlet TYC Sports. 

“Sergio Aguero’s in rude health and Lionel Messi is always good. That is important for the leaders and the coaching staff. We talk to Messi to take care of himself and to play less in Barcelona.”

Liverpool launched Asensio bid

16:30: Jurgen Klopp’s side reportedly failed in a bid to sign Real Madrid forward Marco Asensio after Philippe Coutinho joined Barcelona last month.

Reports claimed they were keen to lure Thomas Lemar away from Monaco with Real Madrid star Gareth Bale also emerging as an outside target.

And Spanish website Diario Gol claim Liverpool failed in a sensational bid to sign Asensio.

The Spain international is being tipped to call time on his Real career come the end of the season.

Manager Zinedine Zidane appears not to have faith in him, leaving Asensio out regularly despite his side experiencing a difficult season.

And Diario Gol say the 22-year-old could now join Chelsea instead.

The Blues want him as part of a sensational swap deal involving Eden Hazard.

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