Four months after being accused of jokingly calling an opponent “bad” during a game, Lionel Messi is back at it again with the insults.
This time, “jerk” is the term Messi is said to have called an opposing player.
Spanish football show The Day After has posted footage of the Barcelona star’s confrontation with Espanyol goalkeeper Pau Lopez in Sunday’s 5-0, which you can watch by scrolling down the page.
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After slyly kicking Luis Suarez’s leg during the game, the Uruguayan reportedly taunted Pau by waving his hands in the ‘keeper’s face after scoring one of his two goals.
Clearly, Messi hasn’t forgotten Pau’s stamp on his leg back in January. This, as well as the kick at Suarez, prompted a response from the Argentine as he made his way back to his own half.
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Messi's confrontation with Pau
The 28-year-old tells Pau: “Now what? Go on you jerk!”
(Translation by 101GreatGoals)
Pau isn’t the most popular figure at the Camp Nou after he stamped on Messi’s leg in a Copa del Rey tie, an incident that the shot-stopper quickly played down.
“I am coming out here because of the reaction," Pau said, per ESPN, after the Spanish media’s hysterical response. “There has been a lot of noise about everything.
“I want to clear up that I never go onto the pitch to harm a fellow professional. It was just one more action in the game. They also faced up to me -- these are things that happen in a game."
The video evidence doesn’t reflect well on the 21-year-old, though. And his latest exploit won’t help his reputation.
Espanyol’s Alvaro Gonzalez accused Messi of jokingly calling him “bad” during the second leg of their Copa del Rey meeting.
The round-of-16 tie was an incredibly bad-tempered affair, with Espanyol having two players sent off and Suarez receiving a two-game suspension in the first leg.
In the return fixture, Espanyol fans unfurled banners displaying hurtful messages about Barcelona’s Gerard Pique and his wife, Shakira.
So there is bad blood between the two Barcelona-based teams, but Espanyol have had little to shout about when it actually comes to beating their rivals.
It’s been seven years since Espanyol last beat Barca, the Blaugrana triumphing in 12 of their last 14 meetings.
Clearly, Pau isn’t taking this whole losing to Barca thing very well.
Barca on the brink
Sunday’s 5-0 victory put Luis Enrique’s team on the brink of back-to-back La Liga titles - a win in this weekend’s game at Granada will seal the championship.
And the league trophy might not be the only piece of silverware Messi is lifting. Barca take on Sevilla in the Copa del Rey final on May 22.