When six time ballon d’or winner and FC Barcelona icon Lionel Messi, dropped the bombshell that he wants to leave FC Barcelona to ply his trade elsewhere, the football World was expectedly rattled.
Prompting pundits who cannot imagine the Argentine going on to ply his trade elsewhere, after earlier promise to end his European footballing career with Barcelona, a club he joined at a very young age, to scratch their heads for answers, a few boldly asserted that the matter will be resolved.
But recent reports from both the player’s camp and the club’s camp seem to suggest that the situation is not getting resolved, rather an imminent collision.
Messi has refused to take part in a mandatory Coronavirus testing which all team mates are expected to take ahead of the pre-season activity.
Barcelona on her part issued a statement reminding him that he still remains their player, while fans hope for a swift and amicable resolution to this drama, interests from high profile suitors across Europe have not helped matters.
There has been reports of underground discussions between Messi camp and Manchester City for a prospect of re-uniting with Pep Guardiola under whom Messi enjoyed his biggest success as a player.
Clubs like Manchester United, PSG – for possible link up with Neymar Jr. And the most mouth watering of all, Juventus, which would see him playing alongside his arch rival as many fans tend to see it, Cristiano Ronaldo.
In the midst of all these, looking at the situation at FC Barcelona over the past few years, Lionel Messi exit may not be bad for the club after all.
In the past few years, Barcelona have signed quite a number of decent players, who were on top of their games in their various clubs, in fact those players were also courted by other big clubs before they ended up with Barcelona.
Sadly, not long after those players make the move, stories of under performance, inability to adapt and more begins to creep out, not long after such players are sold, sent on loan or rendered ineffective.
Recent cases are Antio Griezmann, Dembele and Coutinho, as a matter of fact the later went on to win a treble during his loan spell at Bayern Munich, not forgetting his two goals and one assist he contributed to Barcelona’s humiliation against Bayern.
Critics have argued that these players failed because they failed to pattern their play after Lionel Messi style, whether this is true or not remains speculative, however, their performance in their previous clubs and during loan spells lend a lot of credence to this.
Messi departure will give Barca the opportunity to rearrange their system to give other talents, the opportunity they deserve to thrive as players, while shaping up for the future.
On Messi’s part, it will give him an opportunity to silence critics who have branded him a one club/league wonder, it would be a chance for him to show that he can do it elsewhere.
They should deescalate the unnecessary tension, have a round table discussion, then talk to potential suitors and let the player go for the good of all!
By Oruruo Samuel Okechukwu