Thomas Helmer has likened Bayern Munich attackers Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben to Barcelona star Lionel Messi
Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery are as crucial to Bayern Munich as Lionel Messi is to Barcelona, according to Thomas Helmer.
Ribery has been in sublime form this season having endured a difficult, injury-hit 2015-16 campaign, while Robben marked his return from injury with a well-taken goal in a 3-0 win over Hertha Berlin on Wednesday.
Former Bayern defender Helmer believes the Bundesliga champions will be "hurt" when the influential duo eventually depart the Allianz Arena and described the pair's influence as on the same scale as Messi's at Camp Nou.
"It will hurt Bayern when both Robben and Ribery are not around anymore. They have some incredible quality when it comes to dribbling and one-on-ones," Helmer told TZ.
"There are not an awful lot of extraordinary players like them. They can decide a match with one piece of individual skill. A lot will depend on the two of them if Bayern are to win the treble again.
"People should not forget what the situation is like at other teams. You also get the idea you can get something from the game if you play against Barcelona and Messi is not there. Robben and Ribery are like Messi.
"They have a big reputation and instil fear on their opponents, especially when they are playing alongside each other. It is impossible to keep both of them quiet an entire game."