Sampaoli have lavished praise on Messi and even suggested that there should two Ballons d’Or. One should be for Lionel Messi, the other for the rest of the players. The former Chilean boss will be hoping that his Sevilla players will borrow a leaf from the Manchester city performance in the midweek.
Speaking ahead of Barca’s visit to the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan on Sunday, Sampaoli said: “There should be two Ballons d’Or; one for Messi and one for the rest. “Since his emergence he has been far above the rest. Wanting to compare the incomparable ends up being a mistake. “The way to stop him is to try to make it so he does not participate and does not get the ball. There is a plan against Barcelona and another against Leo.” Sampaoli confirmed Nicolas Pareja is unavailable for selection due to injury, while he will wait until the last moment before making a call on Samir Nasri’s fitness after a hamstring problem kept him out of the 4-0 Champions League win over Dinamo Zagreb in midweek. “Pareja will not play and for Nasri we will wait. The rest are all good,” he added. “[Nasri’s] intention is to play. We appreciate that and therefore we will wait until the last moment. “Because of what he says there is a high percentage he will play. After training and before the game we will assess him.” Barca will be without the likes of Gerard Pique, Jordi Alba, Jeremy Mathieu and Andres Iniesta due to injury, but the Sevilla boss knows they cannot be underestimated. “I do not think they are in crisis … they are one of the two or three best teams in the world and the quality they have, in addition to Messi, makes them practically unstoppable,” said Sampaoli.