Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane did not reveal his plans to stop Lionel Messi but stated that Real Madrid had the necessary artillery to put up a good show at the Camp Nou.
Zidane’s statement is being seen as an attempt to shift the spotlight from Lionel Messi to his own stars ahead of the much anticipated El Clasico.
The top spot at the La Liga points tally will be at stake as Real Madrid will move to Camp Nou and search for their first win in as many as seven La Liga matches against defending Spanish champions.
Although Madrid will be without the services of Eden Hazard, an in-form Karim Benzema and 11 match undefeated streak across all competitions should give Messi the confidence to steal the show and maybe even clinch three points against Barca led by Messi.
Messi, on the other hand, is all set to equal Xavi’s 42-game record for most Clasico appearances for a Barcelona star.
“Whatever happens, it’s a game of football. We’ll start off with 11 against 11, we’ll see if it finishes like that,” Zidane told reporters at a pre-match press conference ahead of the La Liga game.
“We know who we’re up against, a very good side. They’ve proven that for a long time. We know what kind of player Messi is but we’ve got our weapons as well.
“Hopefully we’re going to see a good game of football against a good team that is in for,” he added.
“Every game is different. At that moment, Mateo was the correct player to mark a player like Messi,” he said referring to their last meeting.
“Today is different. It’s a different game, a different story, so we’ll see. We’ll see what happens.”
“I hope we see a great game, that’s the most important thing,” the French tactician said.
“I don’t think the important thing is the result, but how we go out and play during the 90 minutes. That’s what will help everyone to enjoy it.
“Things change quickly in football, so I’m just focused on the day to day.
“We try to do our job as good as we possibly can, to 100 per cent, and try to think of how to change things if things don’t go right for us in the game,” he concluded.