Upamecano faced Messi in the final of the 2022 World Cup but has to once again try to contain “the smartest player in football”
Bayern Munich defender Dayot Upamecano hails Lionel Messi as the smartest player in football ahead of Bayern Munich’s Champions League last-16 clash with PSG on Tuesday.
Messi ‘studies you’!
It wasn’t too long ago when Bayern Munich defender Dayot Upamecano faced Lionel Messi in the World Cup final. While France fought valiantly, it was Messi and company that won it on penalties in the end. Upamecano, who played center back for France in that game, has opened up about facing Lionel Messi.
“He tries to be forgotten so you always have to keep your eyes on him.“
Upamecano has told L’Equipe of the many challenges that Messi poses to his opponents: “If you don’t have your eyes on him, you’re going to be in pain. I think he’s the smartest player in football. He will get behind you and he will always watch how you position yourself.
“He watches how you react, he studies you. He tries to be forgotten so you always have to keep your eyes on him. In addition, as he is small, you can lose sight of him a little. And when you realize it, he is already making his pass.”
Upamecano was unable to contain Messi in the World Cup final, as the Argentine scored a brace. However, he would be hoping to stop him when faces him on Tuesday in a Bayern Munich shirt.