Reports: Mikel Arteta is the instigator of Lionel Messi's tunnel bust up
There is fresh news coming out of Manchester and Spain on the incident that overshadowed the 3-1 win for Pep Guardiola’s men against Barcelona two nights ago in the champions League.
City defeated the Catalans for the first time in their history on a memorable night when Messi broke a Champions League record, saw his side concede thrice and then lost his cool in the tunnel after the game.
Reportedly it was an unnamed Manchester Cty player who caused the row but now according to radio station La Cope the person responsible for starting the whole incident is Pep’s assistant coach Mikel Arteta.
The former Arsenal man apparently insulted Messi after Barcelona’s loss while the players and the coaches were heading towards their respective dressing rooms. This is what the man said to Messi in the tunnel in Spanish:
“Anda tontorrón, vete y métete en tu vestuario“
This translates to the following:
“Move along stupid, get yourself in your dressing room.” Messi immediately responded to that statement, fuming in anger saying:
“Bobo, vení y da la cara!”
The translation of that is the following: “Come over here and say that to my face, stupid”. But Arteta is not the only one to be accused of being involved in the bust up. Fernandinho’s name also came up in the media as one of the instigators but he defended himself after hearing about it.
“I just want to say that the rumours that are circulating in the media are absurd: I didn't even have contact with any Barcelona players or technical staff after the game. Instigating and provoking are not in my nature, bearing in mind that I put a lot of importance on showing respect both on and off the pitch, regardless of the opposition or player in question.”
Messi was already upset before the incident after Barcelona lost their first ever group game in two years. City completely dominated in the second half and were deserved of their win.
It was a great response to the 4-0 loss they suffered at the Nou Camp only a couple of weeks back. The Sky Blues are now in 2nd position in the group with two games left to play. Barcelona are still top of the group but have to ensure they win their remaining fixtures to stay top.
City will take a lot of confidence from this victory and could potentially have a go at the Champions League title based on this performance.