Barcelona teammates Lionel Messi and Marc-Andre Ter Stegen have not seen eye to eye in recent times, and their relationship seems to have further deteriorated this week.
According to Sportslens, the two Barcelona stars clashed after their team’s win over Real Sociedad in the Spanish Super Cup and their bust-up was even caught on camera. The Argentinean and the German have had their problems in the past, but their differences have now reached a boiling point.
The Barcelona hierarchy will certainly be concerned with the reports of two of their longest-serving players falling apart.
Lionel Messi has been at the Camp Nou for nearly two decades, having progressed through the ranks at La Masia before making a blockbuster entry into world football. Since then, the Argentinean has established himself as one of the best players in the history of the game.
On the other hand, Ter Stegen joined Barcelona from Borussia Monchengladbach in the summer of 2014. He became the number one at the Camp Nou when Claudio Bravo left for Manchester City in 2016. Since then, Ter Stegen has been a rock in between the sticks for the Catalans and is among the finest goalkeepers in the world at the moment.
Reports suggest his ongoing feud with Lionel Messi has caused a stir among the Barcelona ranks.
Things took a turn for the worse after the Real Sociedad game. The Argentinean was left out of the starting eleven due to an injury scare but was seen guiding his teammates before the penalty shootouts.
Barcelona went on to win the game and Lionel Messi apparently congratulated everyone except the German goalkeeper. It left Ter-Stegen annoyed and only added to his recent frustration at the Camp Nou.
Lionel Messi and Ter Stegen’s tussle one of many issues currently plaguing Barcelona
The Barcelona goalkeeper is reportedly unhappy with Lionel Messi’s influence in the dressing room. Rumours claim Ter Stegen has previously raised questions about the six-time Ballon d’Or winner’s monopoly at the club. There have been minor issues between the two players before, but instead of addressing them, the club has chosen to turn a blind eye to the situation.
The Lionel Messi – Ter Stegen tussle is the latest in a series of issues currently plaguing Barcelona. The club are also dealing with an aging squad, lack of consistency, and an upcoming presidential election.
Under such circumstances, perhaps both players should have acted like professionals and kept their differences out of the public eye.
Published 16 Jan 2021, 23:40 IST