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20 Feb 2018 by TSZ

Which Teams Has Lionel Messi Scored Against In The Champions League?

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In the build-up to the Champions League Round of 16 clash between Barcelona and Chelsea, the press have been quick to point out that Lionel Messi has failed to score against the South London outfit in eight previous meetings, his longest barren spell against any one club.

While this may be true, the Barcelona superstar’s career goal tally in the competition – 97 goals and counting – means that Antonio Conte’s charges will be treating him as the chief threat regardless.

Some teams have not been quite as effective at keeping Messi at bay as Chelsea have in the past. Here we list the 28 opponents the Argentine has scored against in the Champions League:

Arsenal FC

9

AC Milan

8

Celtic FC

8

Bayer 04 Leverkusen

7

AFC Ajax

6

Manchester City FC

6

FC Bayern München

4

FC Spartak Moskva

4

Panathinaikos FC

4

Paris Saint-Germain

4

APOEL FC

3

FC København

3

FC Shakhtar Donetsk

3

FC Viktoria Plzeň

3

Olympique Lyonnais

3

VfB Stuttgart

3

FC Basel 1893

2

FC BATE Borisov

2

FC Dynamo Kyiv

2

Juventus

2

Manchester United FC

2

Real Madrid CF

2

Roma

2

Borussia M’gladbach

1

Rangers FC

1

Sporting CP

1

SV Werder Bremen

1

Olympiacos

1

As we can see, Chelsea’s London rivals Arsenal have been Messi’s favourite opponents in the competition, with the five-time Ballon d’Or winner scoring nine times against the Gunners. No other player has scored more goals against one opponent in the history of the Champions League, a record shared with Cristiano Ronaldo (nine goals vs Bayern Munich).

With the exception of Chelsea, British clubs have struggled to contain Messi; he has scored at least five goals against six different opponents, with Arsenal, Celtic and Manchester City featuring in that list.

Overall, this paints a sorry picture for British teams:

English teams specifically have suffered the most, although it should be pointed out that Messi has played in more matches against Premier League opponents than against clubs from any other league. The 17 goals he has notched against English outfits is not an overall record however, as Messi’s great rival Cristiano Ronaldo has scored an incredible 26 goals against German opposition.

Lionel Messi has hit the woodwork three times – including a missed penalty – against Chelsea in the past, so they have certainly ridden their luck to an extent. With the first leg taking place at Stamford Bridge tonight, there is also the fact that Messi hasn’t scored in his last five away Champions League appearances.

Whether Conte’s men can hold out for another two matches remains to be seen though, and with the Argentine sitting on 97 career UCL goals, he may well have the century in his sights…

Click here for a full breakdown of Lionel Messi’s Champions League goals

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