Barcelona: Barca became vulnerable when the sight of Messi on the ground, grasping his right arm, hands behind heads, fingers over mouth during Barca’s win over Sevilla, turned the celebrations into worries for Barca and their fans. Barcelona’s lowest ebbs are indeed followed by questions related to Messi and now the questions on over-reliance will haunt the team for a couple of days. The whole stadium was left is sorrows right after the club confirmed Messi has fractured his radial bones.
His absence has left Barcelona in peril when they need him the most especially against the Inter Milan on Wednesday in the Champions League, the Clasico against Real Madrid on Sunday, before a return match against Inter in Italy at the start of the next month.
If the recovery takes longer than expected, Messi might lose some games against Real Betis and Atletico Madrid in La Liga.
Barcelona has always been in a state of dependence, even though the results have taken a turn for the worse.
The dependency on Messi has been like a trend among the players. When Ernesto Valverde left Messi on the bench for the 1-1 draw or when Messi as a substitute inspired a late fightback from two goals against Sevilla and scored in the 89th minute. He played the entirety of the Champions League collapse against Roma but yet again Barca faced criticism to find the answer when Messi wasn’t available for them.
Just like Real Madrid is struggling to overcome the absence of Ronaldo’s aura, it seems like Barcelona for a while might have to deal with the same issue.
“Emotionally we know when Messi is there he gives us more confidence because he is the best in the world,” Pique said on Saturday. “But it does not have to affect us.”
On Monday, Marca came up with options in a “casting for replacements”- Ousmane Dembele, Rafinha, Munir El Haddadi, Malcom, Carles Alena and Sergi Roberto.
The decision for replacements still awaits.