Football

Ozil and Messi clashed in the World Cup final.

Mesut Ozil is just like Lionel Messi, claims Marc-Andre ter Stegen

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There’s only one Lionel Messi, surely.

The Argentine has won five Ballon d’Or awards and often appears to be playing on a completely different level to everyone else in world football.

However, ahead of their Champions League second-leg clash, Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen believes Arsenal have a player similar to Messi in their ranks.

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We know. That seems hard to believe.

The Catalan club are seeking a historic ‘double-treble’ - winning La Liga, Copa del Rey and the Champions League for the second consecutive season.

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Meanwhile, Arsenal are likely to end the season trophy-less as they were humbled by Watford in the FA Cup on Sunday and trail league leaders Leicester at the top of the table by 11 points.

But the German stopper insists former Real Madrid midfielder Mesut Ozil is capable of producing moments of magic, just like his Argentinian teammate.

Arsenal FC v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

"As a footballer, Ozil is a player who can do unthinkable things, just like Messi," Ter Stegen told reporters, per the Daily Mail.

"He is impressive, and we will have to be alert that he does not harm us. I have played with him two or three times and he is a very significant player for the German national team and can do incredible things,” he added.

Of course, Ter Stegen knows all about Ozil’s ability with them both being regulars in recent Germany squads.

Scotland v Germany - EURO 2016 Qualifier

Unfortunately for Arsenal fans, Ozil wasn’t ‘just like’ Messi in the first-leg at the Emirates three weeks ago.

The Barcelona superstar scored twice to give his side a comfortable 2-0 lead heading into the second-leg at the Nou Camp.

And his goalkeeper heaped praise on the 28-year-old.

Arsenal FC v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

"Everyone knows Leo Messi is the best player in the world," said Ter Stegen. "His presence stands out on the pitch and he has always tricks that no-one knows about.

"It is great for us and like all the players on the pitch he wants to win and we want to do everything to help him.

"He is one of the best with free-kicks, he can shoot from everywhere, you never know where it will go and his attitude is incredible."

Despite Messi’s quality and Barcelona’s commanding lead, Ter Stegen has refused to write off the Gunners just yet.

Arsenal FC v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

"They are able to come back as they are still one of the best teams in Europe," said the 23-year-old. "We have to play as we always do, without being afraid.

"We have the edge to go to the quarter-finals and we have to win. Alexis Sanchez is also a high quality player and they will try and counter-attack. They are very good at it. It will be a very difficult game.

"In the first-leg, they had chances to score but we won and that's what matters. We want the same again. We want to keep possession and keep out positions."

Arsenal fans: Does your team stand any chance of progressing to the Champions League quarter-finals? Let us know in the comments box below!

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Topics:
UEFA Champions League
Barcelona
Premier League
La Liga
Thierry Henry
Lionel Messi
Football
Arsenal

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