Chiellini takes Messi swipe

Barcelona’s Lionel Messi would struggle to have the same impact in Italy as he does in Spain, according to Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini.

The No 10 scored an acclaimed solo goal for La Blaugrana in the Copa del Rey final against Athletic Bilbao, which ended 3-1 in his side’s favour.

However, the Bianconeri stalwart claims his forthcoming foe in the Champions League final would not have bypassed four Serie A stoppers in the manner that he did on Saturday.

“[Messi’s opening goal against Athletic] was certainly a great goal,” he told reporters.

“I don’t think Messi would be able to score a goal like that in Italy, where the defending is much better than in Spain.

“There’s better football in the Spanish League but worse defending.

“Messi is now the God of football. It’s difficult to compare him with [Diego] Maradona, Pele and co., but he’s probably the best player of the last 30 years.

“[On whether he will shake Luis Suarez’s hand in light of the biting incident at the 2014 World Cup], of course I’ll greet him before the game.

“Those who know me know that there won’t be any problems. Nothing has changed [between us].

“It’ll be like [greeting Karim] Benzema or Chicharito. I’ll be attentive to his movements.

“[Juve] come [into the Champions League final] with great credit and humility.

“If we do things bravely and limit Barca’s qualities, we’ll have a chance.”

Tags Giorgio Chiellini Italy Juventus Lionel Messi Serie A Spain