Ronald Koeman relishing Lionel Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo showdown as Barcelona take on Juventus in Champions LeagueDecember 9, 2020
RONALD KOEMAN cannot wait for the prospect of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo coming face to face once more as Barcelona take on Juventus.
The two European heavyweights will clash in the final game of Group G – where Juve need a big win to claim top spot from Barca.
Ronaldo missed the first game in Turin after contracting coronavirus will on international duty with Portugal as the Old Lady lost 2-0 thanks to a late penalty from Messi.
But the pair – whose rivalry became infamous when Ronaldo was at Real Madrid – now face each other again at the Nou Camp.
And Barca boss Koeman admitted: “It’s fantastic that these two players have been so long at this top level in the world.
“They are the best players, in my opinion, in the last 10-15 years. Being successful all this time is incredible. It’s a great compliment to those players.
“They are different, but they have incredible stats about scoring goals, hat-tricks, about winning prizes.
“It’s not nice to say who is better because both are incredible, I admire both players because they gave us so many nice evenings with great goals, with great titles. Let’s hope we can enjoy them tomorrow night.”
Koeman also made another complaint about the packed football calendar which he says is seriously harming players and will lead to more injuries.
The Juve clash comes 72 hours after a 2-1 loss at Cadiz which dealt another blow to Barca's La Liga title hopes.
Under-fire Koeman has already lost three key players to long-term injuries this season and now must cope without French winger Ousmane Dembele.
The Barca boss said: "We are killing our players with these schedules.
"It's a real shame to lose another player to an injury and it's another reason why I keep complaining about the match schedules, we are going to lose many more players to injuries."
He added: "If you have to play on Tuesday night, for the good of the Spanish teams you need to think about the timing of the match before. You get back home at 4.30 in the morning and then you have to play again on Tuesday.
"We have played five away matches this season and all of them have been late kick offs. It doesn't help the Spanish teams."
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