The experienced midfielder, a World Cup and Euro 2008 winnner, believes the Premier League club will be”dangerous and intense”, acknowledging their strength over the past decade in Europe. He also warns that the fans in west London are likely to create an intimidating atmosphere.
Chelsea and Barcelona have each reached the semi-final stage of the Champions League six times in the last nine seasons (since 2003/04), the best tallies over that period.
Fans will be keeping an eye on international football’s man of the moment, Lionel Messi.
He’ss the first player to score 14 goals in a Champions League season, and has 32 in his last 27 games in the competition.
Messi is third in the all-time Champions League top scorers list with 51 goals. Only Raul (71) and Ruud Van Nistelrooy (56) have been more prolific.
Interestingly, Chelsea are the team Lionel Messi has played the most against in the Champions League without scoring: six games, zero goal.