Messi’s decision made player mock Cristiano Ronaldo in the dressing room
With really nothing to play for against Sporting Clube de Portugal Ernesto Valverde put out a relatively weaker Barcelona team with most of his first team players on the bench.
Among the big names missing from the starting lineup was Lionel Messi.
According to Diario Gol, the decision for Messi to start from the bench was made on the request of the Argentine himself.
Barcelona players were surprised Messi and impressed as Messi had put the team above his personal ambition.
The report goes on to say that some Barcelona players have used Messi as an example and called out Cristiano Ronaldo who always wants to play especially in the Champions League.
Ronaldo is already ahead this season with 8 goals so far and Messi’s decision to sit out despite being on 3 goals says a lot.
In addition to this season’s group game Ronaldo is also far ahead of Messi in the all time Champions League chart as the Portuguese has 113 goals compared to Messi’s 97 goals.
The players in the Barcelona dressing room heard making comments were André Gomes, Denis Suárez, Aleix Vidal and Paco Alcácer
Meanwhile, Real boss Zinedine Zidane has admitted he loves the rivalry between Ronaldo and Messi.
“It’s true, when we look at their statistics, they’re amazing,” he said.
“It’s surprising to see the amount of goals they’ve scored, actually. They’re two great players.
“One makes the other better and vice-versa. I think it’ll continue, this duel, for some time to come.”