Smalling Handled Messi Exactly How Makelele Did to Ronaldinho

Talking of dribbling tricks. Usually, many defenders feel embarrassed by strikers who give them a hard time to tackle them.

Recently, former Chelsea defender Claude Makelele confessed he warned Ronaldinho he would hospitalize him if he continued with his embarrassment.

It happened again as Chris Smalling was really talking the talk in the build-up to Manchester United’s game at home to Barcelona in the Champions League quarter-final.

The English centre-back declared he was relishing the challenge of facing one of the world’s greatest ever players in Lionel Messi.

Chris Smalling & Lionel Messi contest the ball

“It’s something to relish I think,” he said, per Goal.

“This season, we have been lucky enough to face [Cristiano] Ronaldo, [Kylian] Mbappe and they are all challenges that I definitely relish and I think players at this club relish.

“I say bring it on.”

Needless to say, a number of people were questioning Smalling’s mentality, but the Englishman certainly found a way to stop the Argentine in the first half of the game tonight.

With the ball in the air, Smalling came flying out of nowhere to head the ball, clattering Messi in the process and leaving the Barca legend with a bloody nose.

Well, that’s one way to stop him, but it did look a tad unnecessary from Smalling.

Thankfully, Messi was fine to continue.

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