Former Celtic midfielder Ki Sung-Yueng says he is “looking forward” to going up against Lionel Messi as he closes in on a move to La Liga.

The South Korean, who played for the Hoops under Neil Lennon between 2010 and 2012, looks set to move to Spain given his recent quotes on the matter.

“I’ve been dreaming of playing in Spain since I was young,” Ki is quoted as saying by Wales Online.

Subscribe

Ki playing against Leicester City

Ki playing against Leicester City (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

“I am probably more excited now than when I first joined the Premier League.

“Taking on a new challenge always means something.

“I am obviously looking forward to a chance to go up against Lionel Messi.

Subscribe to 67 Hail Hail TV now

“Just being in the same match as those players will prove valuable even after I retire, if I decide to stay in football.”

Ki never faced Messi while at Celtic

Ki never faced Messi while at Celtic (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

It’s not just Messi who Ki will rub shoulders with

It’s not yet clear exactly who free agent Ki will be signing for – although Wales Online do suggest the names of Real Betis and Real Mallorca as potential destinations.

It will be great to see Ki living it large in another one of the world’s major leagues.

At the age of 31, he’ll still feel he’s got a lot to give. And, on the face of it, Spanish football should suit him pretty well.

Ki in action for South Korea

Ki in action for South Korea (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

Ki is a very technical player, who perhaps didn’t always flourish in Scotland (and England) due to the way the game is played.

In Spain he’ll have much more time to pick passes and move the ball, and that can only benefit him given the way he plays the game.

And the fact he’ll get to rub shoulders with the likes of Messi, plus Eden Hazard and Antoine Griezmann can only be a real positive.

How do you think Ki will get on in his move to Spain? Let us know your thoughts below by contributing to our brand news fans discussion forum…

Have something to tell us about this article?