James Milner has revealed to the Daily Mail that Lionel Messi called him a donkey.
The incident occurred during the first leg of the Champions League semi-final between Barcelona and Liverpool at the Nou Camp.
Shortly before half time, Milner shoulder-barged Messi off the pitch, riling the Argentinean genius up.
At half time, Messi had a few words to say to Milner in the tunnel as the teams walked off.
Milner said: “He was calling me ‘burro’. It translates as donkey but I think it’s also used in Spanish football as a general term for someone who goes around kicking people.
“I asked him if he was all right, but he wasn’t having it. I don’t think he realised I understood his Spanish.
“He said: “That foul you did, that’s because I nut-megged you”.
“I left him to it at that point and went into the changing room.”
The revelation is a candid one and reveals that Milner really got under Messi’s skin at the Nou Camp.
Messi was still the victor that night as he scored twice to seal a 3-0 win for Barcelona.
However, it was Milner and Liverpool who had the last laugh as they came back to win 4-0 at Anfield.
Milner’s won a lot of admiration from Kopites this season for his no-nonsense tackling on some of football’s biggest names.
In the group stages, he famously clattered PSG’s Neymar and left him in a heap on the floor.
Liverpool fans loved, but Neymar didn’t so much, but it let him know that Milner was taking no prisoners.
And Milner’s approach in the first leg clearly stuck in Messi’s head, as he was absent in the Anfield loss.
It’s just another example as to why Liverpool fans, and fans worldwide, have great admiration and respect for Milner.
He is never phased by whoever he comes up against, and uses their own reputation and ego against them.
Milner has always been a no frills player, and this was just another brilliant example of that.
There is also the surprising fact that Milner is a good speaker of Spanish, too!
He admits that he’s been taking lessons for years and speaking to his kids in Spanish when they’re at home.
Who knew it, James Milner the Catalonia catastrophe maker!