Messi speaks after 2-goal, 2-assist Champions League masterclass

AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti
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Neutrals and fans alike were quick to expect a big night from Lionel Messi and Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League after longtime rival Cristiano Ronaldo’s Tuesday hat trick lifted Juventus into the quarterfinals.

They were not wrong.

[ RECAP: Barca 5-1 Lyon ]

Messi had two goals and two assists as Barcelona outlasted Lyon 5-1 at the Camp Nou on Wednesday after a scoreless first two weeks ago.

Asked about his massive performance coming on the heels of Ronaldo’s wonderful day, Messi didn’t bite hard.

Although he did have a word or two for La Liga rivals Atleti. From Marca:

“What Cristiano Ronaldo and Juventus did was impressive,” Messi said. “I thought Atletico Madrid would be tougher. Ronaldo had a magical night with three goals.”

Messi says the club doesn’t have a preference for Friday’s draw.

“All of the opponents are complicated,” he said. “Ajax, for example, showed that they’re an amazing team of youngsters and they don’t fear anyone. It’ll be difficult no matter who we face.”

The win was Messi’s 476th in a Barcelona jersey, drawing him level with former teammate Xavi Hernandez for most in the club’s storied history.

The win came in 94 fewer matches, which is nice.