Atlético Madrid

Barcelona coach Koeman defends Lionel Messi's angry outburst


“I need to defend Leo because if something happened to me after a trip of 15 hours in a plane back to Barcelona — you go outside and there is a lot of press asking that type of question — I would be dangerous and hate them as well,” Koeman said on Friday.


When journalists asked Messi for his response, he wearily answered: “To be honest, I’m a bit tired of always being the problem for everything in this club.”


Many are concerned that the latest unpleasant episode is yet another reason for Messi to go through with his plan to leave the club.


With his contract expiring at the end of this season, Messi will be free to negotiate with other clubs in January.


There is widespread speculation he could be tempted to reunite with former coach Pep Guardiola at Manchester City.


Koeman said that while he does not feel it is his job to convince Messi to stay, he is confident the 33-year-old forward will prolong his 20-year stint at Barcelona.






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