Barcelona are just two games away from creating history as they look to finish the La Liga campaign unbeaten with a trip to Levante first up on Sunday.
The Catalan giants have been in imperious form this season, winning 27 and drawing nine of their 36 league games as they have already sealed the title.
Further, they’ve won the Copa del Rey this season in a successful first year at the helm for Ernesto Valverde, but it seems as though supporters have been given a reason to be upset this weekend.
Lionel Messi has already made 53 appearances this season, scoring 45 goals and providing 18 assists in all competitions.
While he has been a fundamental part of that success, he hasn’t had much time to rest and that will be a concern for him, and one that is shared by Argentina ahead of the World Cup in Russia this summer.
Having now finally been rested after being left out of the squad to face Levante, Barcelona fans aren’t entirely happy as they’ll be desperate to end the season making history by going the entire year unbeaten.
Further, from a personal perspective, Messi is still the frontrunner for the European Golden Shoe, sitting three goals ahead of Mohamed Salah, so missing this game could jeopardise that too.
Whether or not they’re still able to preserve that run without Messi on Sunday remains to be seen, but it looks as though the criticism will be heading Valverde’s way if they slip up for leaving the Argentine icon out at such a crucial time, assuming he didn’t ask to be left out.
The World Cup gets underway in mid-June, and given that the league is already wrapped up, it’s arguably the right decision to give the 30-year-old time to rest and avoid injury with the major tournament fast approaching this summer.
WFT WHERE’S MESSI???? NO MESSI NO PARTY
— #infinit8Iniesta (@Piqu3sidente) May 12, 2018
Where’s Ronaldo’s father?
— Vatsal Chaudhary (@VatsalChaudhary) May 12, 2018
No messi no party!
— danish. (@ArayDanish) May 12, 2018
No Messi = Boring match
— ??? ???? Jonás (@jdmrk11) May 12, 2018
Wait no Messi? ? He is not even interested in the race for highest number of goals.
— Diana ? (@MizGlamfairy) May 12, 2018
Does Velvade really wants to go unbeaten? Why rest the goat.
— JONATHAN WHITE (@jonathanallyjoe) May 12, 2018
No Messi No watch TV
— LeoKing ? (@LeoooKiiing) May 12, 2018
Where is Leo Messi?
— Iamthatteenyouwantedtobe (@Iamthatteenyouw) May 12, 2018
we need messi..he is in race for golden boot??
— ???? ???? (@RaazTha12303460) May 12, 2018
Where tf is messi?
— 21 murder (@lisaarh_ey) May 12, 2018
No messi no party
— Sanelemasa98 (@sanelemasa98) May 12, 2018
Where is the God of football??..MESSI.
— DeBlessed Hommie (@TheBoy_1993) May 12, 2018