Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Messi and Pals Don't Frighten Kompany

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Messi and Pals Don't Frighten Kompany

Article excerpt

INCENT KOMPANY has a message for VVVhas a message for BARCELONA's Pounds 350m BARCELONA's Pounds 350m strike force: "We are not afraid".

The Blues defence kept its first clean sheet for 11 games against Newcastle on Saturday, good timing with Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar due in town for Tuesday's Champions League crunch. And, even though the Catalan aces' attack boast the most fearsome threesome in world football - and the one with easily the highest market value - Kompany is unfazed.

The very mention of the word had the big Belgian bristling with indignation: "Fear? We don't fear them. You don't go in at this level fearing strikers," he said.

"We want to play against them. It's the fourth time in a year now. There's nothing new to worry us, it's a case of having the whole team at a very high level.

"They're a special team with special players, of course. I think their ability is not about hurting you all game - you can have tougher games when you go to Stoke City.

"It's about the fact they can decide a game within a second. They have more players than anyone else in the world who can finish games with a touch of magic.

"But I've come into ootball to play those games. From the moment I'm feeling reluctant to play in these games, I'm not in the right place. This is what I want."

A recent calculation by a business magazine reck-reck oned Messi alone is worth Pounds 190m on the market, twice as much as Cristiano Ronaldo, due to his younger age.

And with ex-Liverpool star Suarez tagged at Pounds 94m and Brazil ace Neymar at Pounds 60m forming the other prongs of the trident, Barca's attack is worth almost twice as much as the entire City team.

But Kompany feels the march of history is on City's side, and that a triumph in the Champions League is a question of 'when' rather than 'if'.

"You play top teams every season and it's unpredictable," said Kompany. …

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