Iniesta: We fear Rooney

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The Independent Football

For all the talk of Cristiano Ronaldo's duel with Lionel Messi, Barcelona players have left nobody in doubt about the man they fear more than any other tomorrow night – Wayne Rooney.

The England striker's appetite for a battle, his insatiable energy and raw power make him, in the eyes of Barcelona's players, the perfect foil for Ronaldo's moody genius.

Central defender Gerard Pique said: "I've never seen a player as powerful as Rooney – the way he goes past people, the intensity of his play, the runs he makes from the first minute to the last and the shot he has. He is world class. Perhaps he does not get the credit he deserves because he should score more goals but he offers so much. When he is focused he is unstoppable."

Midfielder Andres Iniesta added that Barcelona would have to match the work-rate of Rooney if they were to stand any chance of coming out on top tomorrow night.

"What I value most about the way they play is how hard players like Rooney work," he said. "He was filling in at left-back against us last year in the semi-final. Finals are not usually very tactical. We can plan a million things before the game but in the second minute they can strike and all the plans go out the window. We cannot commit any mistakes because they have so much firepower up-front."

Iniesta believes the prospect of being the first Spanish team to ever win a treble would steel them for what will be their 62nd game of the season. He said: "We have 90 minutes and we can win what no one has ever won. It is a chance to make history."