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19-Nov-2020, 03:12 am

'I'm tired of always being everyone's problem' - Messi hits back at Griezmann uncle's claims upon Barca return

Lionel Messi Barcelona

Lionel Messi has fired back at claims that he is responsible forAntoine Griezmann's failure toacclimatise to life at Barcelona, with the Argentine stating that he is fed up of shouldering the blame for failures within the club.

Messi and Barcelona have endured atempestuous relationship over the past year, ignited by the latter's decline in matters both on-and-off-field, finishing the 2019-20 campaign empty-handed in search of silverware.

A protracted battle over the forward's future saw him unable to secure a release from his contract, leaving him tied to the club for at least one more season, while presidentJosep Maria Bartomeu and the board of directors resigned in late October following further dissatisfaction from supporters.

Manager Ronald Koeman has meanwhile failed to restore Barca's fortunes across the start of the new campaign, with the side lodged in 11th in La Liga, nine points off the pace of leadersReal Sociedad.

Close to the centre of renewed scrutiny however is former Atletico Madrid man and France star Griezmann, who swapped the Spanish captial for the Catalan outfit in pursuit of greater glories, only to underwhelm so far.

The attacker has been defended by both his uncle Emmanuel Lopes and former agent Eric Olhats in recent days, with the duo launching blistering attacks on Messi as the cause of his teammate's struggles.

“Griezmann was convinced that he wasn’t going to be successful within the first six months, but what I didn’t expect was that it would last an entire year,” Lopes toldEl Chiringuito. “Besides, with Messi, I know what’s going on inside the club – it’s not easy.

“Basically, Messi doesn’t work hard enough at Barca and the training sessions are structured in order to please certain people, which is fine if you don’t want to work as hard.

The Albiceleste captain, upon returning from the international break now, delivered a curt response to pressing reporters upon his arrival at El Prat Airport, with Goal confirming that the 33-year-old also had an encounter with a tax inspector seeking documentation beforehand that further irritated the weary star.

"I'm tired of always being everyone's problem at the club," Messi stated."I get here after a 15-hour flight and I find a tax agent here, it's ridiculous."

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