Barcelona manager, Ernesto Valverde, has said Lionel Messi must be allowed to breath, amid the weight of expectations on the Argentina superstar.
Messi helped set up Barcelona’s 1-0 first-leg win over Valencia in the Copa del Rey semi-finals on Thursday, turning provider for team-mate Luis Suarez to score the winner.
“When Messi plays the ball, everybody expects many things from him.
“Sometimes it’s too much because we have to let Messi breathe a bit.
“It’s true he is an awesome player as we have said many, many times. It’s a spectacle watching him every day,” Valverde told reporters after the game.
Barca will take the slender lead to the Mestalla and Valverde added: “I wouldn’t say the score is not that bad because I think the score is good because we won the match.
“Winning a match is really difficult and we did. Valencia didn’t score, so we have to think that 0-0 is good for us at Mestalla but we won’t go there looking to draw the match. We will go for trying to win it.”