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Balague: Messi To Man United Could Be Less Crazy Than It Sounds

Balague: Messi To Man United Could Be Less Crazy Than It Sounds
By Paul O'Hara
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Guillem Balague, he of Sky Sports' Revista de la Liga, has claimed that Manchester United and PSG are both interested in a potentially internet-breaking move to sign Leo Messi, because the Argentine is suffering from increasing frustration at Camp Nou.

In a column first published in Spanish title AS, Balague suggests that Messi was much better managed by Guardiola then he is currently by Martino.

While Barça's tactics under Guardiola often left the Argentine somewhat bypassed when things were going against them, he says it was always evident that Guardiola was prepared to go to great lengths to keep Messi feeling comfortable and valued.

Balague spoke to Guardiola for his authorised biography of Messi. Said Guardiola:

He (Messi) always says it. 'When I close up, I close up, and I won't speak to anyone. I need to get over it by myself. And people need to respect that,'" said Guardiola. "At first it was difficult for me to understand, but with time you do. You realise that he is a different type of person. We all have our little things and during these days you leave him alone and then when you get the feeling that he wants you to talk to him again, you go up to him and you talk.

That concern for their star player, said Balague, is no longer as apparent.

With this in mind, he suggests that Messi's frustrations are increasing due to a change in tactics which sees him less involved than he'd like, partly due to the arrival of Neymar.


In addition, a renewed contract would still keep him as the highest-paid player in the club, but would see an overall reduction in his global earnings.

Balague suggests that because of these reneged promises, the club - who would never sell Messi unless they could at least create the impression of the player's unhappiness - could accept overtures from other sides.

The haggling over a new deal, as well as increased media and fan criticism has left the Argentine feeling more exposed than ever before, but it has put the ball firmly in his court should he wish to make a move away from Camp Nou - a move which would cause a footballing hysteria on a par with the OJ Simpson trial, the Clinton-Lewinsky affair, or any other 1990s scandal you can think of. Combined.


A Paris-based reuniting of Messi and Zlatan could cause either gigantic fireworks between the two, or Zlatan's exit from PSG or perhaps from the game entirely. Says Balague:

Not surprisingly, Manchester United and PSG are monitoring the situation closely should Leo be brave enough to jump ship. Needless to say, there's been a surprising reaction from one or two people on Twitter who don't know how these things work but find themselves easily motivated to insult.

Manchester United have asked relevant people what the situation with Messi is, because the impression they get is that the Barcelona board want to sell him. I know for a fact the matter has been discussed at board level and as a consequence, PSG stuck a huge offer on the table.

The journalist and pundit still contends that the move is still an extremely long shot:

Barcelona seem to have concluded now that his sale would backfire on them and want to build the next team around him. What I find baffling is the reaction of a few people online.

What would you think if you were a supporter of one of the richest and most ambitious clubs in the world and you found out that despite knowing that Messi could be available, they did not investigate the matter?

Wouldn't you think that perhaps someone in your club wasn't doing their job properly?


Interesting stuff, or is it all guff? Do let us know your thoughts.



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