Simon Kjaer says LaLiga leaders Sevilla do not fear Lionel Messi or Barcelona ahead of Saturday's top-of-the-table clash.
Sevilla travel to Camp Nou this weekend with a one-point lead ahead of reigning champions Barcelona after eight matches.
Only Barca have scored more goals than Sevilla this season, with Kjaer's side enjoying a remarkable start to 2018-19 thanks to five wins – including a stunning 3-0 victory over Real Madrid last month.
Barca captain Messi has hit the ground running this term with six LaLiga goals and 11 in all competitions but Kjaer and Sevilla do not fear the five-time Ballon d'Or winner or his team-mates as they prepare to take the game to the holders.
"Are there any more words in the world to use to describe Messi? He is simply a fantastic player, and when he hits his best level, it is extremely difficult to stop him," Kjaer told Omnisport.
"You can't man-mark Messi, because Barcelona have so many other great players that they will just take advantage of the extra space you leave for them. You have to defend collectively against Messi and reduce the spaces he can work in - and that way try to make sure that he will not have his best game against you.
"Again, it is a pleasure - and to me basically the best thing in football - to play against the greatest teams and the greatest players. And try to beat them."
Segunda sesión de trabajo de la semana a la espera de los cuatro internacionales que restan por llegar.— Sevilla Fútbol Club (@SevillaFC) October 16, 2018
Toda la información https://t.co/InMSy30NRL#vamosmisevilla #LuchaPorLoQueAmas pic.twitter.com/YbuebJymCJ
Sevilla have not beaten Barca since 2015 – Pablo Machin's men coming off consecutive defeats to the Catalan giants in the Supercopa de Espana (2-1) and Copa del Rey final (5-0).
Not since 2010 have Sevilla beaten Barca at Camp Nou – that rare away success coming in the Copa del Rey during Pep Guardiola's tenure.
"You can't go to Camp Nou with fear in your mind, because then you will get destroyed," Denmark captain Kjaer added. "You have to believe in yourself as a team - believe in the way you play football. So no, we don't fear them but obviously we respect them as one of the greatest teams in the world.
"Having said that, it is our job to make sure that they don't reach their maximum level against us. And that we reach ours. You have to make Barca uncomfortable and challenge them with your game plan, so that they have to focus on playing both ways - and not only attacking the opponent. Parking the bus is not an option at Camp Nou. Then you will lose nine out of 10 times."
17 de noviembre 2018
|Albania 0 Scotland 4: Forrest double sets up promotion showdown|
|Italy 0 Portugal 0: European champions outplayed but secure Finals spot|
|Sensational Djokovic marches into final|
|Stander lauds Ireland´s ´unreal´ defence as All Blacks are thwarted|
|Dazzling Ireland claim historic All Blacks scalp in Dublin|
|Federer unimpressed with Zverev boos|
|Let´s get it on! Cheika relishing England clash|
|Croatia coach Dalic to speak with Lovren over Ramos remarks|
|Xhaka puts improved form down to ´freak´ Emery|
|De Gea not lacking confidence, says Spain´s Saul|
|Jordan goalkeeper scores from own penalty area in friendly against India|
|Pollard leads Springboks to Murrayfield victory|
|Fired-up Japan taught England a great lesson - Jones|
|Sarries leave it late to down Sale, Bath and Saints win|
|O´Shea fumes at disallowed Italy try|
|Southgate welcomes England selection quandary|
|Reaching Rooney´s England goals record ´definitely possible´ – Kane|
|Debut try for Cokanasiga as England rally to avoid Japan upset|
|Wembley will galvanise ´tired´ Croatia, insists Dalic|
|Zverev apologises for tie-break controversy amid O2 Arena heckles|
|Marquez happy with fifth after damaging shoulder in Valencia|
|Wales crush Tonga in Cardiff|
|Germany should keep faith in old guard - Bierhoff|
|Injured Lukaku to miss Belgium´s Nations League decider|
|Zverev knocks out Federer to reach maiden ATP Finals showpiece|
|Koroibete double maintains Australia´s 100 per cent record against Italy|
|Juventus´ Khedira sprains ankle in training|
|Van Dijk: Ramos is not my type of defender|
|Vinales grabs Valencia pole as Marquez crashes|
|I don´t deserve Ballon d´Or, Mbappe does – Hazard|
|Reed and Willett share lead in Dubai|
|Romagnoli joins long AC Milan injury list|
|Williamson steadies Black Caps after Boult heroics|
|Griezmann targets swift French response against Uruguay|
|Havertz´s future lies with Bayer Leverkusen – sporting director Boldt|
|Socceroos boss Arnold excited for future|
|South Africa triumph on Gold Coast in truncated T20 clash|
|Germany without Draxler for Netherlands game|
|Barcelona confirm Rakitic hamstring injury|
|Rain halts England´s post-tea flourish|
|Australia 1 South Korea 1: Luongo seals late draw for Socceroos|
|Irving thrives on ´peace´ of being in the zone|
|Lloris admits France could have lost by more|
|Dybala impressed by Argentina´s improved spirit|
|Arsenal chief confirms Super League talks|
|Hooker knocks out Saucedo to retain WBO strap|
|NBA wrap: Kyrie Irving sizzles as Celtics beat Raptors in overtime|
|Jimmy Butler aims dig at Timberwolves following 76ers home debut|
|Koeman surprised by dominant Netherlands|
|Southgate rallies England ahead of Nations League decider|
|Chile 2 Costa Rica 3: Waston brace sinks La Roja|
|Tite inspired by Guardiola´s City|
|Argentina 2 Mexico 0: Funes Mori´s header helps to sink El Tri|
|Lovren ready for ´fiery´ England clash|
|Brazil captain Neymar pleased with stern Uruguay test|
|Ravens´ Flacco doubtful, Jackson could start|
|Richarlison: I want to be at the Copa America|
|Tabarez buoyed by inexperienced Uruguay|
|Howell fires 64 again to extend RSM Classic lead|
|I´m proud of them - Giggs still upbeat despite Denmark defeat|
|Mancini ´very sorry´ for Ronaldo absence|
|Neymar clinches anything-but-friendly win for Brazil over Uruguay|
16 de noviembre 2018
|Cipriani-inspired Gloucester thrash Tigers|
|Djokovic makes it three wins from three at ATP Finals|
|Germany relegated from Nations League top tier to cap miserable 2018|
|Fulham will back Ranieri in January transfer window if required|
|Brazil 1 Uruguay 0: Neymar penalty settles tight contest|
|Netherlands 2 France 0: Wijnaldum & Depay decisive as Germany are relegated|
|Wales 1 Denmark 2: Jorgensen and Braithwaite seal Nations League promotion|
|Oxlade-Chamberlain targeting early return|