Why Lionel Messi was urged to show Liverpool ‘respect’ by top referee

Lionel Messi was urged to “show some respect” to Liverpool during Barcelona’s Champions League semi-final win over the Merseyside club in 2019.

Barca picked up a 3-0 victory over Jurgen Klopp’s side in the first leg of their last-four clash, with Messi’s hat-trick seemingly ensuring their place in the 2018/19 final.

However, the Spanish giants went on to crumble in one of the most astonishing Champions League nights in history, suffering a 4-0 defeat at Anfield which dumped them out in the semi-finals.

It was a sensational comeback from Liverpool, who eventually won the competition by beating Tottenham 2-1 in the Madrid showpiece.

Their heroic performance against Barca remains one of the greatest moments in Champions League folklore, nevertheless, and much has been written about it in the time since.

But now new footage of that dramatic semi-final showdown has emerged as part of a four-part UEFA documentary.

A mini-series on referees in the Champions League, called ‘Man in the Middle’, is set to premiere on UEFA.tv on December 16.

And the trailer for the documentary provides a new insight into Barcelona’s famous clash with Liverpool in May 2019.

During the first leg at the Nou Camp, Dutch referee Bjorn Kuipers can be seen losing his temper with Messi, giving the Barca legend a telling off for time-wasting late on.

“Messi, come on, show some respect,” Kuipers can be heard yelling at Messi.

“Every time you do it!”

Messi also clashed with Andy Robertson during the second leg, an incident which the Liverpool left-back has previously admitted he regrets.

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Robertson told the Daily Mail last year: “When I look back on things I don't really regret anything because I feel as if everything is experience that makes you what you are.

“But I do look back at that moment with Messi as one regret. I don't like seeing it. When I saw it afterwards I was gutted.”

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