Lionel Messi given dirty job of laying behind wall to block free-kicks as BT Sport pundits slam ‘disrespectful’ move

Lionel Messi given dirty job of laying behind wall to block free-kicks as BT Sport pundits slam ‘disrespectful’ move

LIONEL MESSI was given the dirty job of laying down behind the wall for Paris Saint-Germain in their clash with Man City.

But BT Sport pundits slammed the move as ‘disrespectful’ to the superstar.

AFP

Lionel Messi was given the job of laying down behind the wall for PSG against Man City[/caption]

Messi, 34, grabbed his first goal for his new club last night with a sublime finish against Manchester City, finding the top corner emphatically.

But in the 91st minute, the English champs won a free-kick 25 yards out.

And as the unbeatable Gianluigi Donnarumma lined up his wall to stop Riyad Mahrez’s effort, it was the £884,000-a-week hero who draw the short straw.

The idea behind lying down against the back of his team-mates’ heels is to allow them to jump and prevent anyone trying to shoot underneath them.

Ironically, Messi’s brilliance is a large reason teams use the tactic after scoring set pieces by going under the wall.

But Rio Ferdinand and Owen Hargreaves were baffled it was the six-time Ballon d’Or winner selected to lie down on the turf – despite being one of the shortest players on the pitch.


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Hargreaves said: “We couldn’t believe it. He’s one of the greatest of all time, if not the greatest.

Ferdinand then added: “The moment Mauricio Pochettino asked him to do that at the training ground someone should have gone in there and said, ‘No, no, no, no, this doesn’t happen to Leo Messi.’

“You can’t. It’s disrespectful, I wouldn’t have it.

“If I was in that team I’d say, ‘No, I’ll lay down for you.’

“I couldn’t have him laying down like that. I can’t see it. He doesn’t get his kit dirty. That’s not what Messi does.”