The World Cup-winning defender says that seeing a fellow La Masia academy graduate leave Camp Nou as a free agent was difficult for him. Gerard Pique acknowledges that he “cried” when Lionel Messi left Barcelona, but one long-serving player understands why another had to go to Paris Saint-Germain.
When it became clear that the Liga heavyweights couldn’t afford to grant him a new deal, the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner left Catalunya for Paris in the summer of 2021.
When the mercurial South American said his goodbyes to Barca, tears poured, with fellow La Masia academy graduate Pique among those overtaken by emotion as “the best player in the history of the game” cut his career-long links with the Blaugrana. Pique was a personal buddy of the Argentine legend, who set numerous records during his time at Camp Nou.
“I cried when Messi left Barcelona,” he told Gary Neville on The Overlap of witnessing an all-time great go on. I wept for him. It would have been ideal for his career at Barcelona if he had stayed to the finish. I understand why Messi did not renew his contract. Because of the previous president’s management style, the club was in “dire financial straits.”
At the end of the day, these are life’s circumstances. ” Things don’t always work out once you make a decision. It would have been fantastic if Messi had stayed for Barcelona and the supporters. Lionel Messi is the best player in the history of the game,” Pique continued.
“Messi was the best player for Barcelona. We needed Messi to win trophies, but we also needed a fantastic team, as I’ve always stated. Titles cannot be won by a single player. Pique has also praised former Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola, who won three Liga titles and two Champions League wins in four years at the Camp Nou.
Pique had this to say about the coach, who is now chasing major titles with Manchester City: He is extremely intelligent, and he understands the game like no one else I’ve ever seen. He equips you with all you need to go to the game and be prepared for any situation. He pays close attention to the opposing team and then tells you, “You have to do this in this case, you have to do that.”
“From there, you can be confident that you’ll be ready for the game, no matter what the challenge is, no matter how difficult the striker or centre-back you’ll be facing.” And it’s all because of him; he’s mentally strong, and his speeches are excellent. He makes an impression on you.
I recall him speaking in such a way that you felt you had a really significant challenge in front of you but also an opportunity to prove yourself to the world and that you could beat them.