Taliban gains drive Afghan government to recruit militias    UN urges Israel to halt building of settlements immediately    Egyptian Premier League fixtures (27th matchday)    Bayern Munich to kick off Bundesliga season at Gladbach    First COVID-19 case could have emerged in China in Oct 2019: Study    Zamalek extend stay of winger Zizo for another 3 years    Contact Developments launches Quan Iconic Tower at New Capital with EGP 1.5bn investments    Egypt retrieves 3 Pharaonic, Greco-Roman era artefacts in London    Sisi stresses need to safeguard, develop Awqaf funds    Cairo to host fifth round of Eurasian Economic Union free trade talks in November    Hyundai Rotem signs $110 million deal to upgrade railway signal system in Egypt    Egypt launches Tamayoz, an index for SMEs    Egypt's Suez Canal Authority announces solution on impounded Ever Given    Egypt Government policy of fiscal, monetary policy harmony reduced COVID-19 repercussions: Finance Minister    Egypt ready to support manufacture of COVID-19 vaccines in Africa: Prime Minister    US, EU condemn airstrike on Ethiopia's Tigray market which left 51 dead    Egypt recovers 114 artefacts smuggled to France    MEP questions Washington's logic of hyping up China threat for military expansion    Russia in showdown with UN and West over aid to Syria    'Scary' Sydney virus cluster blamed on delta variant grows    Euro 2020 brings back long-forgotten memories of glory for qualifying teams    Manchester City's Riyad Mahrez gets engaged to British model Taylor Ward    Egypt's delay in including Mo Salah, Mostafa Mohamed at Tokyo Olympics raises concern    In Video: Egypt recovers 114 ancient artefacts smuggled into France    Sudan calls on UN Security Council to intervene in GERD dispute    Egypt, Germany discuss bilateral relations, GERD developments    Egypt's Health Minister reviews precautionary measures during Cairo Book Fair    Egypt's FM discusses bilateral relations with German counterpart    IMF approves final tranche of Egypt's SBA loan programme    Egypt's Senate commences fulfilling its obligations under clear jurisdictions: Ahmed Diab    Egypt extends 'Kings of the Sun' exhibition in Prague until 30 September    Egypt's CBE extends its preventive measures against pandemic's negative impacts through end of 2021    Don't miss Romeo and Juliet ballet shows at the Cairo Opera House    Arab history at the Institute    The second filling    Egypt opens its first anaerobic gasification unit    Egypt keen on negotiation leading to binding deal on GERD, irrigation minister tells S.Sudan's officials    HSBC earmarks funding to a coastal ecosystem restoration project in Egypt    Egypt accuses Ethiopia of using GERD crisis for political purposes    Egypt's Water Resources Minister in South Sudan for cooperation talks    APO Group enters new exclusive agreement with Getty Images on African press releases and images    Egypt is on short list of partner countries for U.S. COVID-19 vaccines: embassy    Russia to resume charter flights to Egypt resorts in the coming days    Egypt's Sisi announces allocation of $500 million for reconstruction in war-wrecked Gaza    On International Museum Day, Egypt opens two new museums at Cairo Airport    Egypt's Ahly is establishing a new stadium, expected to be 'sports complex'    Old Cairo's Al-Fustat will be revamped on Egyptian President's directives    Veteran Egyptian journalist Makram Mohamed Ahmed passes away at 86    







Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.





Exuberant Messi spearheads La Liga triumph
Published in Ahram Online on 17 - 05 - 2015

Just when some wondered if Lionel Messi was losing his passion for the game, the Argentine bounced back showing exuberance and his full footballing repertoire in spearheading Barcelona's charge to La Liga triumph.
A rejuvenated Messi played some of the best football of his career during the second half of the season as part of an increasingly deadly attacking trident that has propelled the Catalan side to their fifth league win in seven years.
Barca have rolled over their opposition in all competitions with a mighty 29 victories from their last 32 games since the turn of the year that keeps them on course for a repeat of 2009's treble success.
Messi came into 2015 in the doldrums on the back of irregular form by his own high standards and there appeared to be plenty of friction between him and new coach Luis Enrique.
Off the field he had a strained relationship with the club that had been intensified by an investigation by tax inspectors where he didn't get the support from Barca he felt he was entitled to.
Meanwhile, Real had made the running in La Liga, ending 2014 with a Spanish record 22-match winning run and Messi's arch-rival at the Bernabeu, Cristiano Ronaldo, was named World Player of the Year.
When Barca lost their first game in January away to Real Sociedad and news emerged of a bust-up between Messi and Luis Enrique the talk turned to crisis.
The Argentine returned late from his Christmas break and was angry at being made a substitute in San Sebastian. There were heated exchanges between the pair, and Messi missed training the following day claiming to be unwell.
In the middle of the storm, the club was reeling from FIFA's decision to uphold Barca's transfer ban for two windows due to breaking rules over the signing of foreign under-18 players.
This led to the firing of sports director Andoni Zubizarreta and president Josep Maria Bartomeu announcing elections for the end of the season.
However, the club found its way out of the chaos with a new understanding forged between Luis Enrique and Messi, while fans unhappy with the running of the club were assuaged by the calling of elections.
The pieces to the jigsaw fell into place on the pitch with Luis Enrique ending his early season tampering and rubber-stamping a new brand of counter-attacking football.
After a slow start following his return from a biting ban in October, Luis Suarez found his form to devastating effect and he and Neymar became the perfect accompaniments to Messi.
Telling blow
At the same time Real were stuttering, with Ronaldo unable to maintain his ruthless early season form, and they suffered important injuries for Gareth Bale, Luka Modric and James Rodriguez.
A telling blow was struck towards the end of March when Barca won the 'Clasico' to open up a four-point lead in the table and they have not looked back since.
Following that Sociedad game Messi, who scored the goal at Atletico that secured the title on Sunday, has gone on to play every match and Luis Enrique has been full of praise for him.
"Messi is the best in the world without doubt and for me the best in the history of football," he said recently.
After another imperious season for Barca, when Messi became the all-time top scorer in La Liga, in a power struggle with the coach it was clear that there was only going to be one winner.
(For more sports news andupdates, followAhramOnlineSportson Twitter [email protected]_Sportsand onFacebookatAhramOnlineSports.)
http://english.ahram.org.eg/News/130523.aspx


Clic here to read the story from its source.