Lionel Messi has admitted Barcelona’s stars are missing their former coach Pep Guardiola and that his presence is still felt around the training ground.
Guardiola left Barça last May, claiming that he needed to take a break from football and that he would take a year out of the game.
Messi was speaking to an Argentine radio station Radio del Plata when he made the admission of missing the Camp Nou’s former coach.
“We all notice he has gone. He was with us for so many years and we won so much with him,” he is quoted as saying by AS.
Guardiola won 14 major titles in four years as manager of Barcelona, overseeing Messi’s progression into arguably the world’s best player and three straight Ballon d’Or trophies.
Despite missing Guardiola, the Camp Nou’s favourite son said the squad will concentrate on succeeding under new boss Tito Vilanova.
“Now Tito is in charge and we hope to continue winning things,” added Messi.
There is continuity with Barca’s new boss though, as he was Guardiola’s assistant during the club’s most successful ever period and the methods used at the training ground are unlikely to have changed a great deal.
Messi took a step close to another record in last week’s 2-2 el clasico draw with Real Madrid, where his brace took him to just one goal behind Madrid legend Alfredo di Stefano as the all-time top scorer from the famous fixture.