‘Marking Messi? A challenge…’

Mikel Balenziaga is ready for another go at marking the ‘best player in the world,’ Lionel Messi, as Athletic Bilbao meet Barcelona in the Supercopa de Espana.

The first leg of the tie takes place on Friday at San Mames and the left-back has spoken to the Press in advance of the match.

“I learned we had to have a plan for more than 90 minutes and he still proved to be a player of another level,” AS reports Balenziaga told the Press.

“I don’t mean he’s unstoppable, but almost. We tried, we did what we could, and hopefully on Friday we’ll do a bit more.

“When we decided what we were going to do, I was excited. It was a challenge, something I had never done.

“I will always remember I marked a player who is the best in the world. I’d repeat it as often as I could.

“When Messi is in top form, as he was against Sevilla, he’s very difficult to stop. But we can’t get too involved and play their game.

“We’ll have to be careful not to make mistakes. If you don’t have intensity you can’t beat Barcelona.”

Tags Lionel Messi Mikel Balenziaga Supercopa de Espana