Barcelona need the right time to phase out Lionel Messi and now may be the perfect date to do so with a generational talent taking the world by storm.
Barcelona got the Ronald Koeman era off to a great start as a 4-0 win over Villarreal with some emphatic individual performances raised the Blaugrana spirits once again. Lionel Messi scored against the Yellow Submarine and was joined on the scoresheet by teammate and potential successor Ansu Fati, who got two on the night.
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A beautiful analysis can be made about how the Guinean is settling into the club after a strong start last season and has made a strong case to be a regular starter at the Camp Nou. The 17-year-old’s recent performances go on to suggest that he has everything possible to inherit a brightly lit torch from the club’s greatest in the coming years.
Messi was within touching distance of departing Barcelona this summer but disputes over his release and apparent promises from the next presidents compelled the Argentinian to stay at the club. However, with Fati heading into his full professional season, now would be the perfect time to cope with life without the 33-year-old.
In the easier matches, Fati should be given the starring role with Messi obviously present on the pitch but with a lesser relevant role to play. The Spain international thrives in his idol’s presence but it will be time one day that he has to shoulder all the pressure by himself and doing it under the guidance and watchful eyes of the greatest player would be of fruition.
Lionel Messi is certain to stay at the Camp Nou right now and perhaps even beyond 2021, but now is the right time to start using him for the major matches only and let Fati gradually have a greater share of the limelight. With that said, even Messi and his biggest fans will agree that his seasons at the top are lowly numbered making Ansu Fati the next big thing.