Lionel Messi has found it ‘hard’ after returning from a two-month injury lay-off and says the key to Barcelona’s success is the entire team enjoys themselves.
Messi had missed two months of playing time after he was injured against Las Palmas, returning as substitute in Barca’s Clasico win and making his first start in Tuesday’s rout of Roma, scoring twice.
“I’m happy with the game, the result, playing 90 minutes again. I’m returning little by little and luckily it’s all going well,” he said, AS reports.
“We never said [that Barca were dependent on Messi] and that’s been demonstrated. I had a hard time not being on the pitch but I enjoyed watching what my teammates did in every game.
“It’s not just [the trident of Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez], it’s the whole team. There’s a good atmosphere, we try to be professional, to have fun and to get along day by day. It’s important, what matters is the group is united.
“It has been hard starting again. I prepared well and trained but it’s not the same to train as to go onto the pitch and play for 90 minutes. I’ll get back up to speed calmly.”
Messi was asked why Neymar took the penalty Barca were awarded – missing with Adriano converting the rebound – and if there’s a chance the Barca front three could dominate the Ballon d’Or.
“Hopefully I can do something, but I’m not going crazy about it. Suarez and Neymar think like me,” he said regarding the world player of the year prize.
“Nothing happens if that doesn’t happen, we’ll keep trying to do what we do.
“I think Neymar has taken four or five penalties and not missed any, so he took it again.”
Barca last season claimed the League, Cup and Champions League treble and Messi acknowledged their recent form has been good, but played down the chances of a repeat.
“We’re at a very good level but there’s a lot more time to go to where the League, Champions League and the Cup are defined,” he cautioned.
“We’ve not yet reached December. You have to think about what is coming short-term, the League games before the Club World Cup and nothing else.”