Barcelona stalwart Lionel Messi has once again proved why he is such a gentleman on the field after his latest tryst with Luis Suarez.
The Argentine legend was at his selfless best against Athletic Bilbao in the weekend’s La Liga encounter. As the Catalans stomped to a 2-0 victory to stay atop unbeaten, in the 41st minute, his gesture was top class.
The in-form Messi scored the first goal from a free-kick, and with the team being awarded another set-play opportunity, he grabbed the ball to take his 2nd shot. But Suarez immediately went up to Messi and said something in his ears, and the evergreen player then allowed the Uruguayan to take the free-kick instead.
Although Suarez missed his chance, it showed Messi’s humble attitude in allowing his teammate to take the shot. The Argentine has also allowed several such opportunities to former Barca player Neymar. But after the Brazilian left Barcelona for Paris Saint-Germain in a world-record €222m deal in the summer, it is now up to the duo to keep the team’s attacking prowess flowing smoothly.
Neymar still isn’t the first choice at PSG in taking penalties and free-kicks, despite him wanting the same. Feuds with Edinson Cavani occurred due to this. But in Barcelona, with Messi, it is a different tale.
Messi has been in top gear this season, and has already hit double figures in La Liga. Meanwhile, Suarez has just scored three goals so far in the league, and is hoping to gain his usual form to share the load with the former.
Barca are eight points clear of current champions Real Madrid, as they seek to regain the title at end of the season. For now, the club, under Ernesto Valverde’s management, isn’t showing any signs of stopping, as the team continues to rake in the wins.
Written by Rajdeep Saha
Sports journalist with stints across print, digital and television. Contribution to each medium has been thrilling. Experienced in writing for this passionate game called football. Journalist by choice and passion.