Tito Vilanova has hardly put rumours of a bust up between David Villa and Lionel Messi to bed by saying the pair hadn’t fallen out as ‘far as I know’ at a press conference today.
The attacking duo have seemingly found it hard to get along since Villa returned from a broken leg this season and have had at least one very public falling out.
The pair were at loggerheads last month during Barcelona’s win over Granada when Messi felt aggrieved that Villa had taken on a shot rather than played the Argentinian in on goal.
Messi let his team-mate know exactly how he felt after his shot went well wide of the goal, with Villa forced to fight his corner looking rather sheepish.
Rumours of a rift between the pair were soon put to bed – until Barcelona’s defeat against Celtic this week. Although video footage is far from conclusive, Messi appeared to aim a dig at Villa for not passing once more.
Following defeat against the Scottish side Vilanova was forced to face questions and in a press conference insisted there was no problem between the pair.
"Villa and Messi, as far as I know, get on well, perfectly well," the man who replaced Pep Guardiola at the end of last season declared.
In the aftermath of the incident at Celtic Park there has been plenty of speculation surrounding Villa’s future at the Nou Camp, with Chelsea said to be keen on taking him to Stamford Bridge. While that seems unlikely, it will be interesting to see how the pair get on in the coming weeks.
Is Villa cramping Messi’s style after the three-time Ballon D’Or winner was allowed the freedom to attack on his own last season so spectacularly?
Is the Spanish striker finding it hard to get back in the groove after such a long time out of the game? Or is Messi just short of sleep after his girlfriend gave birth to his son, Thiago, at the start of the month?
Watch the two incidents and decide for yourself – is there a problem between Lionel Messi and David Villa?