18 Feb Barcelona’s Griezmann, Pique concerned in expletive-filled spat throughout PSG thrashing
Gerard Pique and Antoine Griezmann’s frustration boiled over into an on-pitch argument as Barcelona have been crushed 4-1 by Paris Saint-Germain within the Champions League on Tuesday.
Pique, making his first look since struggling a proper knee damage in November, screamed at his teammates to “maintain the f—ing ball longer” as they ready to defend a nook. Griezmann responded by telling him to relax.
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“F—ing hell, Grizi,” Pique shot again. “No. M———–. We’re struggling. We have been [pinned] again for 5 minutes. F—ing hell, we’re operating like loopy.”
Griezmann replied: “Do not shout at me, m———–! I’m struggling as nicely and I’m operating like loopy.”
The 2 eased off when goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen reminded his teammates of their defensive duties as PSG received able to take the set play.
The argument occurred simply earlier than half-time, when the rating was nonetheless 1-1 after Kylian Mbappe had cancelled out Lionel Messi’s penalty.
PSG, and particularly Mbappe, eased via the gears after the break, with the striker finishing his hat trick and Moise Kean additionally on goal because the Ligue 1 champions took an enormous step towards the quarterfinal forward of the return leg in Paris on March 10. The defeat evoked reminiscences of current European losses to Roma, Liverpool and Bayern Munich.
Griezmann has since returned to France after Barca gamers got two days off following the defeat, inflicting controversy among the many native media. When he was accosted by reporters on the airport late on Tuesday, the Barca ahead advised them it was none of their enterprise the place he was going.
Defeat to PSG leaves Barca on the brink of a second consecutive trophy-less season. They’re eight factors behind Atletico Madrid in La Liga having performed one sport extra and 2-Zero right down to Sevilla of their Copa del Rey semifinal tie.
Regardless of that, coach Ronald Koeman mentioned it’s “loopy” to counsel he ought to contemplate stepping down and reminded supporters that it’s going to take time to see the good thing about the modifications Barca are present process.
“We lack issues, positive, however I’ve by no means thought earlier than this sport that we did not,” he mentioned. “It’s not the tip of the trail. It appears I’m extra lifelike than everybody else.”
Koeman’s feedback got here on the identical day former midfielder Xavi Hernandez, teaching Al-Sadd in Qatar, reiterated his need to take over at Camp Nou sooner or later.
“Everybody sees me because the Barca coach in the future,” Xavi mentioned. “I respect Barca quite a bit and I even have respect for Koeman, the present coach.
“However I hope [to return as coach]. I will not conceal that, however with respect for the present administration team on the membership, who’re in the midst of [three] competitions, and I want them the most effective.”
A brand new president might be elected at Camp Nou on March 7 and, relying on outcomes, might determine to nominate his personal coach.
“We’ll see who is available in as president within the subsequent month,” Xavi added. “However after all, it is a dream to educate Barca. There isn’t any doubt about that.”