With Barcelona facing a pivotal two months in their season, Lionel Messi is reportedly unimpressed with one of his teammates.
The Catalan giants are still on course for a treble in Ernesto Valverde’s first campaign in charge, with the La Liga title, Copa del Rey and Champions League still achievable objectives as we enter the final stretch of the campaign.
In turn, they’ll need all of their players to be locked in and fully focused on the task in hand, but amid speculation over his future, Samuel Umtiti has drawn the ire of Messi, according to Diario Gol, as re-reported by The Express.
It’s not clear how they’ve managed to obtain such insight into the Barcelona dressing room, but it’s certainly a feasible suggestion given that Messi will be desperate to win more major honours this season and he’ll expect the same mentality and focus from every player in the squad.
Nevertheless, as noted by Diario Gol, Umtiti has been the subject of plenty discussion in recent weeks with regards to his contract and a potential exit, and so it’s suggested that it may be distracting him which has led to Messi’s frustration.
Ultimately, Barcelona still have the second best defensive record in the league, thanks in large part to the solid partnership built between Umtiti and Gerard Pique.
However, that will count for nothing if they slip up again in the coming weeks, as they already dropped points at the weekend at Sevilla and that will in turn only increase the tension within the squad with suggestions like this not helping matters.
From Umtiti’s perspective, he’ll surely be desperate to win major honours at the Nou Camp and so it’s difficult see this as being anything other than a potential excuse for slipping up. Barcelona will just hope that there aren’t any more between now and the end of the season, at which point it’s the right time to discuss contract renewals and such.