Sunday March 23 2014
Martino: The League begins again

Tata Martino believes Barcelona’s win over Real Madrid has given the champions fresh hope of retaining the title.

Barca came out on top of a seven-goal thriller and speaking to reporters after the match, Martino was full of praise for Lionel Messi.

Messi scored a hat-trick, including two penalties, and the Coach was almost struck dumb by the contribution of his compatriot, who became El Clasico’s leading scorer with his first goal.

“I can hardly talk about Leo but there’s no need, it’s compliment after compliment,” Martino said.

“Today he breaks another record…I hope he gives me the match ball.”

Martino also defended the performance of Neymar, pointing out that the Brazil forward won Barca’s first spot kick and got Sergio Ramos sent off in the process.

“Neymar’s only 21 but it all happened with him. We were level through and Ramos was sent off through his phenomenal diagonal run,” Martino pointed out.

“The League begins again.

“But it doesn’t change my perception that beyond El Clasico, it’s just one game.”

Football Italia website