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Barcelona win 2-0; extend La Liga unbeaten run to 31-games

Barcelona win 2-0; extend La Liga unbeaten run to 31-games

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has admitted that he is wary of the threat posed by Lionel Messi when his side take on Barcelona in the Champions League, but insists that they can not afford to focus exclusively on stopping the five-time Ballon d'Or victor.

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde named a strong team for the game, with Andres Iniesta, Messi and Suarez all starting and Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele on the bench. The Blues eliminated Barcelona in the Champions League semi-finals when the teams last met in 2012, with Ramires and Fernando Torres pulling Chelsea back from behind after John Terry was sent off.

Barcelona, the last remaining unbeaten side from Europe's five major domestic leagues, warmed up for Tuesday's Champions League round-of-16 clash with Chelsea by dismantling seventh-place Eibar side away from home on Saturday and extending their unbeaten run to 31 games in the league, tying the club's all-time record in the process.

"We have been analysing this team for a long time", Conte was quoted as saying by Sky Sports.

We are speaking about one of the best teams in the world.

The hosts have been one of the most surprising teams in La Liga this season.




"We have to try to have the ideal game and to make the best decisions also for this type of team, because this is a different opponent".

"This is a different opponent". We have to try to, I repeat, have the flawless game.

Five-time Ballon d'Or victor Messi has led the way this season with a LaLiga-high 20 goals for Barcelona.

The absence of Neymar has meant Messi has been able to come inside from his usual station on the right wing, now occupying a central role playing off Suarez.

Conte has warned his players not to fixate on marking Lionel Messi, and believes Chelsea can pick the Catalan giants apart when in possession of the ball themselves.

'On Tuesday, let's see, I know Coutinho can not play, but we will do something'. "We're not thinking about Tuesday's game". "It's two matches. We will go there to win, but we know they will put pressure on us", Alba added. Though Hazard is considered as one of the best players in the Premier League, he still must show his greatness in the Champions League.