The shot stopper does not fear the Argentine and wants to shut him out like in the World Cup final, but he realises Barcelona will be a tough nut to crack
Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer has vowed to show Barcelona star Lionel Messi “who’s boss” when they meet in the Champions League semi-finals and is desperate to keep the Argentine quiet.
The two sides meet at Camp Nou for the first leg of their last four tie, with Neuer and Messi meeting for the first time since Germany triumphed over Argentina in the World Cup finall in 2014.
The Germany international has nothing but respect for the 27-year-old, but is confident that he can keep him quiet once again.
“I have a lot of respect for Messi and for everything that he has achieved. He is very humble,” Neuer told L’Equipe.
“But it’s crucial to show authority when we meet on the pitch and show him who’s boss. I did the same in the World Cup final and this worked out pretty well.
“We will be looking to do the same on Wednesday night. It is vital to obtain a position of dominance and instil respect.
“We have to make good use of our physical presence, our character and show a certain ruthlessness.”
Bayern demolished Barcelona 7-0 on aggregate in the semi-finals two years ago, but Neuer has stressed things are different now and expects a tough tie.
“The game against Barcelona is a final before the final. Our goal is to make it to the showpiece in Berlin.
“We dominated Barcelona in both legs in the semi-finals two years ago, but the situation has changed.
“This time, they have no injuries and Messi is back to his best, while we are misisng several key players,
“We know that we face a tough task, but I am confident we will get our chances.”