Mata: Beating Barcelona will be difficult but not impossible for Chelsea

The Spaniard believes that experience will have a big part to play in Wednesday's fixture, with the Blaugrana struggling at Stamford Bridge in recent years
Chelsea playmaker Juan Mata has insisted that although their game against Barcelona on Wednesday night will be difficult, progression to the final of the Champions League isn't impossible.

The 23-year-old stated that the Blues' experience and their display against Tottenham has given them great motivation as they prepare to face the Spanish and European champions.

Mata told reporters: "As soon as we found out that we were playing against Barca, everybody knew it would be difficult but not impossible.

"Chelsea's hope is to progress, Barca will try to hold possession and force us to defend but we have a lot of experienced players in these type of ties."

The former Valencia midfielder is hoping that Stamford Bridge will continue to be a difficult destination for his compatriots in their semi-final first leg, with the Catalans having only won once three years ago, through a late Andres Iniesta strike in 2009.

"My team-mates did mention that if there is one stadium where Barca does not feel comfortable and struggle, that is Stamford Bridge, especially in recent years.

"The previous meeting with them was a very exciting one until the end.

"Deep in stoppage-time, Andres scored a great goal but that is in the past. I hope the outcome of this semi-final will be a different story."

Lionel Messi is the top scorer in this season's Champions League and the Spaniard conceded that controlling the Argentine will be tough.

Mata said: "To stop Messi is very difficult. He can appear at any time, as was the case this weekend in La Liga.

"But we cannot forget that Barca also have other dangerous players."

The winger dismissed fears he was feeling the effects of the club's punishing run of games and insisted he would be fully fit for the clash at Stamford Bridge.

He continued: "I am very happy with the way I'm playing. I'm satisfied to avoid injuries.

"I've played many games this season and I'm still holding on physically so I have to continue like this."