Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman has revealed how Lionel Messi remained angry a week after he was punished in training. The Dutchman disclosed that Messi made sure it was the only time he ever got punished in his years at Barcelona.
Barcelona players play a game of rondo before training, and they punish the players who fail to get the ball. Koeman revealed that if the ball went around 20 times, the player in the middle would have to take an extra turn. If they failed three times, they would get hit in the head by their teammates.
When Messi was asked if he was punished, the Argentine told Koeman it happened once. According to the Dutchman, Messi stayed angry for a week because he failed to get the ball.
"We always play rondo before training. If the ball goes around 20 times, then the players in the middle must have an extra turn," Koeman told Voetbal International. "If that happens three times in a row, the players will form two lines, and the two who were in the middle then walkthrough and get taps on their heads and such."
"I asked Messi if it had happened to him once. 'Yes, once,' he said. In all those years. With him, the older players never lost an exercise against the young. It happened once and Messi was seriously angry about that for a week. Really, a tyrant."
Messi joined PSG in the summer for free after Barcelona's financial problems meant they were unable to sign him to a new deal.
Ronald Koeman feeling the pressure at Barcelona
Ronald Koeman is under pressure at Barcelona following a string of poor results. The Catalans have won just two of their four league matches and were thumped by Bayern Munich in their Champions League opener. However, Koeman does not want anyone to feel sorry for him, claiming it's common in Spain for managers to take the blame.
"No one has to feel sorry for me," he said. "In Spain, the manager will get the blame. It's very black & white here. You get a penalty against you while being better for 90 minutes, they will blame the manager's tactics. I don't ask for understanding. I just look at the facts."