The former Prime Minister of Italy has emphasised that he will not be telling Massimiliano Allegri how to set up the team, and is aware of the task at hand for the last-16 encounter on Wednesday.

"It will be very difficult to beat Barcelona," he told RTL 102.5.

"I still haven't found the time to talk to boss Allegri, but I won't tell him what side to pick - I've never done that.

"I know the role of the president and that of the coach - I respect those - but a president has the right to give advice to his coach.

"On this occasion my suggestion would be that Messi is man-marked."

Berlusconi then went on to confirm that the former Cagliari boss is likely to be in charge at San Siro for one more season.

"If a president doesn't agree with a coach then he fires him, but Allegri is still here and has a contract for another year," he said.