It's not often the words 'Lionel Messi' and 'powerless' are used in the same sentence, but against Real Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup on Wednesday, that was exactly the case.
Messi scored Barcelona's only goal across the two legs - a penalty that was rather dubiously awarded to Luis Suarez at the Camp Nou.
Other than that, the Argentine did very little else as Barca were dominated by a far superior Real side that didn't even need Cristiano Ronaldo for the second leg.
The damaging defeat reinforced the popular notion that a major shake up is needed in Catalonia, especially so following the sale of Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain.
Barcelona lack youth without the 25-year-old Brazilian, which has prompted the club's hierarchy to target Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho (25) and Ousmane Dembele (20) of Borussia Dortmund.
Messi will no doubt be demanding new signings before the transfer window closes on August 31 if he's to sign a new contract.
Barcelona chiefs dropped a bombshell on Thursday that the 30-year-old STILL hasn't committed his future to the club, contrary to previous reports.
Messi's unconfirmed future represents another major concern and will need to be sorted as soon as possible to ease the growing tension.
His behaviour at the Bernabeu - more specifically in a heated exchange with Sergio Ramos - suggested even he is feeling the strain at the moment.
In the video below, with Real 2-0 up (5-1 on aggregate), Ramos offers the ball to Messi but completely mugs him off by throwing it over his head. Messi responds by calling him a "motherf****r".
MESSI-RAMOS ROUND 1
Extended footage has now emerged of the exchange and it would appear Messi wasn't finished after calling the Real captain a "motherf****r".
The new video shows Messi approach Ramos once again and say to him: "You only do it when you win, no?" in reference to Ramos only acting that way because Real were winning.
MESSI-RAMOS ROUND 2
Messi, like his Barcelona teammates, will want revenge on Real after losing so heavily in La Liga's curtain-raiser.
But the truth of the matter is that's only going to happen if the Blaugrana wisely reinvest the £200 million from Neymar's sale.
Paulinho has arrived for €40 million, but the Brazilian is nowhere near the calibre of player needed if Barcelona want to take back La Liga.
Coutinho and Dembele would be sound acquisitions - it's just a case of convincing Liverpool and Borussia to let go.
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