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Thursday, February 16, 2012
Voller hits out over Messi shirt farce

Bayer Leverkusen director of sport Rudi Voller has condemned the behaviour of Michal Kadlec and Manuel Friedrich following the pair's over-exuberant efforts to swap shirts with Barcelona's Lionel Messi in their Champions League encounter on Tuesday.

Full-back Kadlec and centre-half Friedrich have been criticised by the German media for the way in which they pursued Messi for his shirt at the half-time and full-time whistles.

The pair reportedly argued about who would keep Messi's shirt on their way to the dressing room after Friedrich beat Kadlec to the Argentina forward when the referee blew for half-time.

Kadlec made amends at the final whistle as he laid claim to that shirt that Messi had worn for the second half of Barcelona's 3-1 win.

However, the two players have since been told by an unimpressed Voller that they must put the shirts up for auction.

"I can guarantee that Kadlec and Friedrich will auction off their Messi shirts for a good cause,'' Voller told Bild. "What the pair did was a bit over the top.''

Voller added that similar scenes will not be tolerated when the two sides meet in the second leg at the Nou Camp.

"I have not spoken to the pair yet, but I will do,'' he said.

Speaking after the game, Kadlec justified his behaviour, telling Sky television: "When you play against such a player, then you always want his shirt. I would have swapped it immediately for a better result, but it is a shame that we did not do enough.''

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