Nigeria defender Efe Ambrose has described former world footballer of the year and Barcelona star, Lionel Messi as the easiest player he’s had to mark in his professional career.
In what could be a shocking revelation, Ambrose claims that the Argentine superstar who only yesterday became the top goalscorer of all time in the Spanish La Liga with 253 goals, is very predictable to play against.
And speaking to SL10.ng, the Celtic of Scotland defender – who has played against Messi on several occasions both for Nigeria and Celtic – said it’s ‘easy’ playing against the Argentina captain.
“You cannot call Messi a number 9 because he roves, so it’s easy playing against him. The easiest player to play against is the one that doesn’t come to bully you and it’s Messi of course,” he told SL10.ng.
“Messi doesn’t come to you, he makes his move from afar and for me if you play against someone like Messi, you’ll have time to see what he wants to do and you have time to read his plan because he doesn’t come to the center half, he plays from far away with his ability and dribbling skills.
“So that’s why for me I would say Messi is easier because Barcelona just pass and pass the ball. So you as a centre half you just have to keep to your zone. So for me, I think Messi is easy,” Ambrose said further.
The 26-year- old Nigerian defender has been in an indifferent form this season, and has recently lost his place in the Celtic first team. He has also been hugely criticised in Nigeria as one of the players who let the country down with below par performances as they failed to qualify for the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations(AFCON) to be held in Equatorial Guinea.
But in a more shocking revelation, Ambrose rated West Bromwich Albion striker and compatriot, Victor Anichebe as the toughest player he’s played against, and said Swedish superstar and PSG striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic is another player that could be difficult to play against even though he’s yet to face the big Swede.
“I have played against some very good players but I will pick Victor Anichebe because he’s a number 9 that is very strong and he gives the centre half lots of problems.
“But another player that I think will be very tough to play against will be Zlatan Ibrahimovic because of his height and size, and his ability and he’s very strong. But I’ve not played against him, but I think he will be a very difficult person to play against,” he added.