Liverpool midfielder Fabinho has faced off against a multitude of world-class forwards over the course of his career, and still to this day, Paris Saint-Germain star Lionel Messi stands out to him.
During a question-and-answer session with Sky Sports, Fabinho was asked to pick the “toughest opponent” he has ever faced. Without much hesitation, the Brazilian midfielder opted to select Messi, and he took some time to reflect on the Argentine’s two-goal performance against Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League knockout stage three years ago.
“I always wanted to play against him to see how he is on the pitch,” Fabinho said. “Of course, [Lionel] Messi is one of the best players in football history, but I always wanted to face him to see if he was really good on the pitch as well.
“And he was really good. I think I played against Messi maybe three times and the first time, maybe he scored two goals. The first game at Camp Nou in the Champions League semifinal.
“He wasn’t really active in the game but always when we had the ball, he could do something different. A pass or an individual action for himself. That’s why this player doesn’t need much to be dangerous in the game, so yes, he didn’t do too much but he scored two goals.”
There is a chance that Fabinho could soon once again square off against Messi, as Brazil and Argentina could very well meet in the World Cup knockout stage in the coming weeks. This potential matchup sure would be among the most anticipated in recent memory.