Date published: Tuesday 25th June 2019 6:42
Louis Van Gaal has gone on an unbelievable rant about Barcelona’s failure in the Champions League and has named Lionel Messi as the main man to blame.
Barcelona were shocked by Liverpool in this seasons semi finals despite going into the second leg with a 3-0 advantage.
The club last won the trophy in 2015, beating Juventus 3-1 in Berlin, their 5th triumph in the competition.
Now, former boss Van Gaal believes he knows why they haven’t been able to win it since and he picks out a very surprise name.
‘Look at Barca, how many Champions League titles have their won with the person they say is the best player in the world?’ Van Gaal said in an interview with El Pais.
‘Look at Neymar at PSG. How many Champions League titles have they won?
‘Neymar and Messi are players I like as individuals but they aren’t team players.
‘Messi must ask himself why it’s been so long since he won a Champions League. ‘He’s the best individual player in the world because his numbers are incredible. I like him a lot!
‘But, why hasn’t he won a Champions League in five years? Why? As captain, he should ask why his team hasn’t won in Europe.’
Messi has 603 goals in 687 games for Los Cules, a remarkable record which has seen him lift the Balon D’or on 5 separate occasions. He has also won the European Golden Shoe 6 times.
Despite team failure in this years Champions League, he did hit the back of the net 12 times in just 10 games, meaning that Van Gaal’s remarks will come as a surprise to many.
Van Gaal salutes Liverpool pair
Van Gaal was, however, impressed with what he saw from Liverpool in the Champions League and during the season overall after Jurgen Klopp tweaked his approach.
The Dutchman also had praise for James Milner.
“In the final of the Champions League, Milner played as a defender and as a midfielder. It’s great that he can offer that at 33,” said the 67-year-old.
“The forwards? Everyone plays for the team. [Mohamed] Salah, [Roberto] Firmino and [Sadio] Mané work very hard in defence because [Jurgen] Klopp wants to press.
“He saw the light a few months ago: he understood that pressing is not always the right thing to do. It depends on the conditions.
“His Dortmund was more offensive than his Liverpool side, where he learned that sometimes you have to hold a little bit, collect your lines and counterattack.
“That is good for Salah, Mane and Firmino because they are very quick to take advantage of the spaces behind the rival defence.”
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