Lionel Messi has stressed that Barcelona are desperate to rise to the challenge of Champions League success this season.
The Argentina international previously won the competition in 2006, 2009 and 2011, but was unable to help Barcelona hold on to their title last term as Chelsea proved to be too strong in the semi-final stage.
Barcelona booked their place in the knock-out stage of this year’s edition on Tuesday though, when they beat Spartak Moscow 3-0, and Messi has made it clear that the European trophy is their main objective.
“The Champions League is a big challenge for us, because of what it means,” Messi stated at a press conference.
“It’s the hardest competition to win, the best to play in and it’s where the best teams are. We will work hard to win it.”
Messi’s relationship with team-mate David Villa has reportedly turned sour after a number of heated arguments on the pitch between the two, but the forward remained coy on the matter.
“I’ve got nothing to say,” the Argentine retorted. “I don’t have to explain anything to anybody, people can think what they like.”
Messi has been in sublime form this term, netting 24 goals in 19 official appearances for Barca.