Thursday, October 28

a hug of a thousand words


A picture is worth a thousand words and the hug between Messi and Pedri in Valladolid worth a thousand words.

Happiness. Gratitude. Emotion. Love. Liberation. Affected. Relaxation. Feeling. Passion. Recognition. Fullness … Although it is only a goal, Barça’s third in Zorrilla. A hug as significant as the horse with which Ronaldinho raised Messi by scoring the first goal of his career at Barça.

Eyes closed and arms clenched. It is not a conventional or formal hug. It is not one more. It seems a sign of satisfaction from Pedri for feeling adopted by the greatest and from Messi for having discovered one of his peers. The staff of his old age in the unequal age, between the 18 of Pedri and the 33 of Leo. Someone to get along with speaking the same language in the field while outside they talk about whether something serious could come of this new relationship. And, above all, if he can have some continuity with Messi’s permanence at Barça, only guaranteed until June 30.

“Pedri does not have the physique of a high-level athlete but he plays with his head and thinks faster than others. He has a different feeling with Leo, they are very intelligent ”, says Clément Lenglet

A sprout of understanding

It is not, far from it, the intimate bond that Messi had with Luis Suárez, sharing life and family. Neither the fraternal relationship with Gerard Piqué cultivated since childhood, nor the silent treatment with Sergio Busquets after a decade enjoying success, nor the intuitive connection with Jordi Alba, a frequent assistant.

It is a connection arising from football understanding, a green outbreak in the communicative dispersion of the dressing room, with Coutinho absorbed again for not meeting expectations, with Griezmann thinking of celebrations for the goals he does not score, with Dembélé entering and leaving the infirmary and with Trincâo assimilating, gaping, what is this of elite football. Not to mention a Busquets who fears the substitution around the corner, a Pjanic annoyed at being substituted and a De Jong waiting to know if today he has to act as a midfielder, interior or pivot.

“Good players understand each other well. Pedri is a player with a head. He does not have the physique of a high-level athlete but plays with his head and thinks faster than others. Have a sensation different with Leo, they are very intelligent in the field ”, described Clément Lenglet, triple satisfied for having returned to the starting position, for having won the game and for having scored a goal thanks to a gift from Messi.

Two Pedri candies

After giving and distributing assists facilitating the final show of others, for a day Messi felt gratified with a candy. Although he had to remove the packaging, of course, because Pedri’s unsightly high heel was not a goal assist in itself; it only prolonged Leo’s vertical run into the area. You had to make a control oriented with the right, sneak between the defenders and face Jordi Masip, old partner who knows all about Messi after so many years exercising sparring in the goals of Sant Joan Despí.

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Yes it was an assist the 40-meter pass from Pedri to Messi that left him facing the first heads-up with Masip. Messi, stupefied, missed the ball due to lack of habit in receiving such gifts. Then he did take advantage of it. He knew how to recognize Pedri’s gesture with his thumb, while assuming his mistake.

“The connection that Pedri has with Leo and the others is very good. Works a lot. And without the ball it is important in our team. I see Leo happy, with his creativity he is very important. You can tell if there are very good players by his side, “explained Koeman, eager to see a lasting relationship in the team.


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