I am looking forward to competing again, says Lionel Messi
Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi said that he is looking forward to playing in La Liga again. However, he highlighted that it will be weird to play behind closed doors. La Liga is aiming to restart the 2019-20 season next month. European football leagues were suspended earlier in March amid the coronavirus pandemic. Here's what the Barcelona skipper had to say.
"We cannot think about what we are leaving behind this year. It is better to think about the future," said Messi on the website of sports brand Adidas. "Like going back to day-to-day training, seeing your team-mates, playing your first few games. No doubt it will be strange at first, but I am looking forward to competing again!"
Messi feels playing behind closed doors with no fans in the stadium will have its series of challenges. "The preparation at squad level is the same as for any other match, but it is true that individually you have to train and get mentally prepared to play without people because it is very weird," the Argentine claimed.
On May 23, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said that La Liga can resume behind closed doors from June 8. "From June 8, La Liga will be back. Spanish football has a huge following but it will not be the only recreational activity that will return." La Liga president Javier Tebas welcomed the move and is hoping for a June 11 restart.
Messi stated that teams and players will experience the resumption differently. "It will be like starting over," he said. "Technically it will be the same season, but I think all teams and players will experience it differently."
La Liga teams have 11 matches to play this season. After 27 games, champions Barca lead the proceedings with 58 points. Rivals Real Madrid are second and trail Barca by two points. Five teams, including Atletico Madrid are fighting for Champions League berths.