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Messi Takes Another Swipe At Barca

Unhappy star critical of the club’s handling of Luis Suarez’s departure.

Barcelona V Alaves
Messi (right) says he is “no longer surprised” by the club’s behaviour in reference to his former team-mate’s departure to Atletico Madrid.
Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images

Lionel Messi has taken another potshot at Barcelona over the manner in which Luis Suarez was shipped out of the club.

The Argentinian said Suarez deserved a better send-off having been one of the most important players in the club’s history.

Uruguayan Suarez has joined Atletico Madrid after being told he was no in new boss, Ronald Koeman’s plans.

It’s only a few weeks since Messi announced he would stay at Barcelona despite being adamant about wishing to depart. He felt club president Josep Maria Bartomeu had given him assurances he could leave if desired, but when it came to the crunch the president interpreted the legalities of Messi’s release somewhat differently.

Messi was left feeling the victim of deception.

In a post on Instagram, Messi paid tribute to Suarez, saying it will be “strange” to see him “with another shirt and much more to face you”.

“You deserved a send-off matching who you are - one of the most important players in the club’s history, achieving important things both as a group and individually.

“Not to get thrown out like you have been. But the truth is at this point nothing surprises me.”
It makes you wonder how the season will develop for Barca. It’s certainly not an ideal way for things to commence under a new manager, Ronald Koeman, with the club’s star player and president at loggerheads. The trust appears to be broken between the two men and the differences now irreconcilable.

The boost will be felt in the capital, where champions Real Madrid will be enjoying all the negative press around their great rival. It almost certainly gives Los Meringues the advantage in the 2020/21 title race before even a ball id set in motion.

Suarez, now 33, won four La Liga titles, as many Copa del Reys, the Champions League and Club World Cup after joining Barcelona from Liverpool for £74m in 2014.

His two-year deal at Atletico comes with a reduced salary. His new club will pay a nominal fee of no more than 6m euros, which is also based on performance variables.