Barcelona forward Lionel Messi has reportedly advised James Rodriguez to leave Real Madrid and showcase his ability elsewhere where he’s appreciated.
It’s claimed by The Sun that the Argentine international went out of his way to speak to Rodriguez after El Clasico at the weekend and told him he is better off moving on to a new club.
It was just the latest game that the Colombian playmaker was left on the bench, as he has made just 13 appearances in limited minutes in all competitions so far this season.
Rodriguez has contributed two goals and seven assists in that time, but he continues to struggle to secure a regular spot in Zinedine Zidane’s starting line-up even in the absence of the injured Gareth Bale.
As a result, perhaps it does make sense for him to move on and find a club willing to give him a prominent role as he has certainly shown through his career that he is more than capable of shining on the biggest stages.
That won’t make Messi’s reported actions any less controversial though and it will undoubtedly anger Real and the club’s supporters that he’s even involved himself in their matters.
It remains to be seen though whether or not it encourages Rodriguez to make a change, as he will likely have options available to him.
The Sun go on to suggest that Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho is aware of the fact that the creative star is unsettled in Madrid and so could make his move and try to persuade him to swap Spain for England and make the move to Old Trafford.
It’s suggested that Anthony Martial could be used in any potential deal as the Frenchman is of interest to Real and so a swap deal could suit both parties as the former Monaco man has struggled to produce this season under Mourinho.