Champions League: What Lionel Messi told Smalling after Man United’s defeat to Barcelona

Manchester United defender, Chris Smalling has finally revealed what Barcelona captain, Lionel Messi, said to him following his side’s 1-0 defeat to Ernesto Valverde’s men in the Champions League quarter-final first leg tie.

A first-half own goal by Luke Shaw gave the La Liga champions all three points against the Red Devils at Old Trafford on Wednesday night.

Smalling left Messi with a bloodied nose after an aerial challenge with the 31-year-old during the match.

The centre-back said he spoke with Messi after the match and the Argentine international told him that he “knew” the clash he had with him was an “accident”, adding that they both shook hands and wished each other good luck in the return leg at Camp Nou next week.

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“Yeah we spoke after. I didn’t realise at the time actually that I had caught him like that,’ Smalling told BBC Radio 5 live.

“But after the game we had a brief chat, shook hands and he said he knew it was an accident.”

Smalling added: “Luis Suarez after as well, we had a good tussle and he just shook my hand after and said good luck and we just said good luck.

“So it’s nice when you can have that battle on the pitch and then obviously there’s full respect after the game because ultimately you’re just trying to do your best and enjoy the game.”


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