The days of being the FC Barcelona Coach for Luis Enrique seem to be counted. The riff between himself & Lionel Messi has been the straw that broke the camels back. Apart from this there is another new front of conflict now open with Neymar after being substituted in yesterdays Spanish Cup. The Brazilian has openly aligned himself with Messi to gather strength.
So what ignited things?
The dressing room has not taken too well the authoritarian style of their current Coach, with examples of "muscle flexing" with Pique, Xavi Hernandez, Dani Alves & others during the current season. There is a general consensus between the players that Luis Enrique does not have a clear plan or playing strategy, that he is not the adequate profile for a Club like
. They don't have faith. Barcelona
However the final explosive detonation, according to Spanish media, occured on the 2nd of January, and the day that Messi returned from his holidays (last to return along with Neymar). The context was the training session that day - open to family members - were Luis Enrique demanded from Messi more intensity in his training. This reprimand in front of his team-mates & family angered Messi. The player reacted scoring two goals & recriminating his Coach with ..."now what".
At the end of the training session Messi went to Luis Enrique to say that if he had anything to say, that doing it privately was more appropriate. This lead to a heated argument between both that nearly got the fists - according to some media sources - had not team-mates Iniesta & Stegan intervened to push apart both protagonists. This broke the existing relation between both.
The following Liga match Messi started on the bench, & in later days "faked" a stomach complaint to miss training while "flirting" with Chelsea FC warning that he would leave if things did not change.
In this public arm wrestle between Luis Enrique & Messi, the latter has clearly won. Sources close to the Club tells media that FC Barcelona President Bartomel has told Messi privately that he would sack Luis Enrique soon, so as to calm his most prized asset. Let’s not forget there will be Presidential Club elections at the end of the season & a Messi exit would hail a certain loss as the Club members would not take it too well.
Luis Enrique has no support, all the dressing room has turned their back, while the Club is surprisingly "silent". FC Barcelona plays Atletico de
next Sunday in Liga & a loss would certainly be the end of Luis Enrique. However,
said this, Luis Enrique has no credibility with his players; he is a
"lame-duck" & may surprise by quiting before being sacked. The
man has his pride. There is talk that players have recommended the return of
ex-Coach Frank Rijkaard. Madrid
It’s like "Mutiny on the Bounty”, but Football style at FC Barcelona. Sad end, but forewarned by Guardiola in his days at FC Barcelona. The now Bayern
Coach warned that
the Club had created a Monster - indicating Messi. This forecast was one of the
reasons he left Barça, he knew the Club would always back Messi over any Coach.
This is always a dangerous strategy, now the Club has a serious fire, a mini
"dictator" calling the shots. Munich
Stay tuned for developments.