'Barcelona are nothing without Messi'

Former Bayern star Jean-Marie Pfaff believes Pep Guardiola’s side are the strong and that they will ease past the Spanish club if they shut down the Argentine

Former Bayern Munich goalkeeper Jean-Marie Pfaff says Barcelona are overly reliant on Lionel Messi.

Barcelona were drawn against Bayern in the Champions League semi-finals on Friday , with the Bavarians’ coach Pep Guardiola set to face his former club in a competitive fixture for the first time since moving to Germany.

Bayern stormed into the last-four with a 6-1 second-leg demolition of Porto on Tuesday to claim a 7-4 aggregate victory, while Barca cruised past Paris Saint-Germain 5-1.

Pfaff, who played for Bayern between 1982 and 1988, reckons the German club have the edge on Barca in terms of depth.

“Barcelona are a great team but I believe Bayern Munich are much stronger collectively,” the Belgian told Sport1.

“If Messi doesn’t have a good day, half of the Barcelona team isn’t good. The striker can be good but if the last pass doesn’t come it’s difficult.

“I think the whole team of Bayern Munich, from the goalkeeper to any other player can combine very well.”

Barca will host the first leg and, while Pfaff does not deny that Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez make up one of the most dangerous attacks in world football, the 61-year-old is confident Bayern can match the Catalan club across 180 minutes.

“Yes, this is a difficult game. And this is of course a very big game,” he said.

“To play in Barcelona against Neymar, Messi and Suarez; with these three strikers, Bayern’s defenders have to stay focused.

“But the game is about two lots of 90 minutes. And so I think that Bayern Munich will go through.”

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