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Fabregas determined to stop Messi

Chelsea FC v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg
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Cesc Fabregas has vowed to do all he can to stop former teammate Lionel Messi, as Chelsea prepare to face Barcelona in the Champions League

Chelsea travel to the Nou Camp on Wednesday for the second leg of their Round of 16 tie against Barcelona. The two sides previously met at Stamford Bridge for the first leg and finished with a 1-1 draw.

Messi has scored a total of 31 goals with 13 assists in 37 appearances across all competitions for Barcelona this season. While wary of the threat that the five time Ballon d’Or winner poses for his side, Fabregas is determined to do everything he can.

“If I am lucky enough to play, we are positioned in nearby areas of the pitch,” Fabregas told Marca.

“Stopping him will be difficult but I will do everything possible so that he feels uncomfortable and can’t put together a perfect performance.

“I see him as a rival who wants to win, and I want the same thing. We are in different teams and each player wants what is best for their own club. Obviously, you always have respect for each other.

Fabregas was a member of Barcelona’s famous “La Masia” academy, alongside the likes of Gerard Pique and Messi. The Spaniard re-joined Barcelona, from Arsenal, back in 2011 and went won to win six trophies with the Catalan giants, before joining Chelsea in 2014. But the 30 year-old is unfazed by the prospect of facing his former club.

“It doesn’t bother me to play against my previous club or old friends, it motivates me. I did it with Arsenal and now with Chelsea, I’ve felt pretty good on both occasions.

“Nobody should doubt that I want the best for my current club. In fact, it gives me extra motivation.”