Oct 1, 2013; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; A general view during the game between Real Salt Lake and D.C. United in the U.S. Open Cup final soccer match at Rio Tinto Stadium. D.C. United won 1-0. Mandatory Credit: Jim Urquhart-USA TODAY Sports

Mascherano isn’t concerned about Messi


Lionel Messi hasn’t scored a goal in over three games. That has some Barcelona fans panicking, and they blame new head coach Gerardo Martino for the way that he is playing Messi. Against Real Madrid in the classico, Martino had Messi line up on the right wing instead of in the middle.

His teammate, Javier Mascherano, is downplaying the fans concerns.

“It is true that playing more to the right Messi can intervene less than before in the play,” Mascherano told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “But that was just in the Clasico and was only a certain strategy from the coach.”

Messi isn’t blaming Martino either, he is blaming his fitness for the goal drought.

“Games against Espanyol are always very difficult,” Messi said, via his personal Tencent Weibo account. “I am still not at 100 percent physically, but I am sure that with the run of games I will pick up rhythm.”

There is probably some truth in between the two explanations. Messi’s fitness concerns have forced him to play more cautiously as well.

“The injuries have meant that Leo really fears a relapse,” Messi’s fatherJorge Messi told Radio Barcelona. “But you can be relaxed, he will return.”

Tags: Barcelona Lionel Messi