Luis Suarez was recently transferred to Atletico Madrid from FC Barcelona for €6 million. After it became official, Suarez’s teammate and friend, Lionel Messi logged into Instagram and left Suarez a heartfelt message as he captioned a picture of both of them together. In doing so, he said some interesting things about La Blaugrana that the media latched on to right away.
Messi spoke about the fact that he’ll miss spending time with Suarez both on and off the field. He said, “How difficult it’s going to be not to continue sharing the day to day with you, as much on the field as off it. We’re going to miss you so much. We’ve had a lot of years together, many friends, lunches, dinners… Many things that will never be forgotten, every day together”.
Messi continues by criticizing how Barcelona handled Suarez’s departure. The forward says that Suarez, who is the third-highest goalscorer in the club’s history, deserved a proper goodbye and doesn’t deserve to be thrown out like that. The caption read, “You deserved a goodbye for what you are: one of the most important players in the club’s history, achieving important things both as a group and individually. You did not deserve to be thrown out as they have done to you. But the truth is that at this point nothing surprises me.”
Suarez seemed to have made peace with the situation and was quoted in his farewell press conference saying that he “knew they’d ask me to leave” but he thought he fulfilled the expectations placed on him. According to BBC, Suarez said, “I expected it because it had been said already before the coach told me but I can accept it,”. He continued by saying “players sometimes need a change, the club needed a change and in this case the coach didn’t want me”. Suarez, who had been at Barcelona for 6 years, is not only the club’s third-highest goal scorer but had helped the team to win four La Liga titles, four Copa del Reys, the Champions League and Club World Cup.
Neymar Jr, who joined Paris Saint-Germain from Barcelona in 2017 after his €222 million release clause was activated, also commented on Messi’s Instagram post. Neymar Jr who was instrumental in Barcelona’s success and iconic treble in 2015 said, “Incredible how they do things.” Neymar of course is referencing what transpired between himself and the Catalan giants. The team which placed 2nd in La Liga last season filed a lawsuit against Neymar about his contract renewal bonus that they felt he should return.
Decorated Brazilian defender and former FC Barça stalwart, Dani Alves, also weighed in on Messi’s Instagram post. He commented, “Unfortunately, that is reality from a long time. It is only confirmed year after year! It’s not about winning or losing, we know that a lot, it’s about respect and they don’t know that! Keep it up, somehow we’re there.”
While Messi is correct in saying Suarez shouldn’t have been tossed like that, some of his anger is probably remaining from his failed move to Manchester City this summer. Messi wanted to move to Manchester for free however La Liga said that Manchester City would have to pay the full buyout clause – the small matter of £630million.
Barcelona has been enjoying success on the backs of these players but they obviously care more about business and less about the wellbeing of their players. This isn’t looking good for arguably one of the top 5 biggest clubs in the world. One may even think that their failures on the pitch may be a direct result of internal / structural issues.
Barcelona lost to Bayern Munich 8-2 and bowed disgracefully out of the Champions League competition. In addition to that, Barcelona lost the league to Real Madrid. It’s clear that they are looking to make changes but mistreating key players is hardly going to make the situation better. Dani Alves said in an interview in 2017, “The people who run FC Barcelona have no idea how to treat their players”. The players have spoken over and over again, your move Barça.