As structural changes are ongoing at Barcelona, the team’s manager, Ronald Koeman has taken advantage of that by literally rearranging the locker room at Camp Nou, which still makes talisman, Lionel Messi the focal point.
AS’ Javier Miguel wrote that: “One of the best-kept secrets of the dressing room is the order of the players’ lockers.”
According to him, the Dutch tactician has decided to do this having consulted the captain, Lionel Messi, and delegate Carles Naval. His intention is to achieve a professional atmosphere and promoting good vibes within the group.
According to the new arrangement, the new signing, Sergiño Dest is sitting next to Frenkie de Jong. This could be due to the Ajax connection.
Miralem Pjanić sits next to Sergio Busquets; it could be because they are two veteran midfielders banding together. Ansu Fati is next to Ronald Araújo, while Gerard Pique is on his other side. Riqui Puig is sitting between Francisco Trincão and Martin Braithwaite, while Neto sits with Matheus Fernandes.
Clement Lenglet sits immediately after De Jong and Carles Aleñá, while Ousmane Dembélé sits with Samuel Umtiti, and Antoine Griezmann has been placed between Jordi Alba and Marc-André ter Stegen. Next, after the goalie is Messi and Trincao.
Meanwhile, Sergi Roberto are next to Alba and Griezmann while Philippe Coutinho is with Busquets.
Lionel Messi still the focal point in the new Barcelona locker room arrangement
After the new arrangement, Messi is still in the most privileged position, front and center of the dressing room. This is because as club captain, he has to be at the fulcrum of everything.
This could be said to have been a good move by Koeman who is paying close attention to a reported lack of unity in the dressing room. This should be pleasing to Barcelona fans.
Despite failing to score from an open play before Real Betis 5-2 win over the weekend, Koeman has backed Messi that he still remain the best in the world and he brings out the best in the team.
“Messi has shown me to be a person who wants to win things and continue to be the best, even though he has had his problems with the club.
“Barcelona has been, are, and will be a better team with Messi than without. When I arrived, they told me that Messi was unhappy.
“We spoke at his house and he explained his reasons to me. I was honest. I told him that the only thing is the system, his position on the field, his importance in the team.
“But the problems that he had had with the club I couldn’t change. From the first day I have said the same thing. He is the best and is committed to the club.
“He has had his issues, his problems this summer, but since he returned to the training he has been very good.
“He has had bad luck in some games and he has not been able to offer the usual performance, but I am sure that at the end of the season he will have scored the usual goals.”
Messi came in to score a brace and created one assist to secure maximum points for the Catalan club at the Camp Nou. The win sees Barcelona move to the eighth spot on the La Liga table, sandwiched in between Real Betis and Valencia, adrift of Real Sociedad at the top of the table with 9 points and five from Huesca at the bottom.
After the international break, Barcelona resumes business with a trip to a high-flying Atlético Madrid.