Javier Mascherano Defends Under-Fire Barcelona Teammate Lionel Messi

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Javier Mascherano has spoken out in defence of teammate Lionel Messi…

Barcelona midfielder Javier Mascherano has spoken out in defence of teammate Lionel Messi, dismissing the criticism of him as excessive and backing the Argentine to rediscover his top form.

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The 27-year-old says the remarkably high standards Messi has set himself means too much is expected of him on every occasion he plays.

As the Daily Mail explains, Messi has already scored six times for the Catalan giants this season and took his career tally up to 400 after his double against Granada last weekend.

Mascherano told reporters: “Criticism of Messi, on several occasions, has been excessive. We are accustomed to unimaginable things, that only he can do, and when he doesn’t score a goal it doesn’t mean he’s not good. It’s practically impossible to see him play badly.

“Everything Barca have achieved in recent years has been thanks to players like Messi, [Andres] Iniesta and Xavi. They have made this team one of the best in history. Messi has given a lot to Barca, and Barca to Messi too.”

The source adds that Messi and his team-mates will look to bounce back from their midweek Champions League defeat against PSG when they travel to Rayo Vallecano on Saturday night.

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