Injured Messi takes centrestage as Barca visit Getafe

Madrid, Dec 21 : Even though he is far away in Argentina recovering from his thigh injury, there is little doubt that Lionel Messi will be the main topic of conversation as FC Barcelona visit Getafe Sunday evening.

Messi's declarations on Catalan radio that the club's economic vice-president, Javier Faus "had no idea about football," has added further fuel for those who are looking to fan any flames of discontent in the club, reports Xinhua.

Messi's words come at the end of a week which has seen the European Union (EU) open an investigation over Barca's (as well as that of Athletic Club, Real Madrid and Osasuna), social structure which allows them to pay a lower rate of tax than the majority of clubs.

The week also saw a judge ask for the contract which took Neymar to the Camp Nou in the wake of accusations of irregularities, rumours that Messi's father was being investigated (since denied) over money laundering activities involving drug trafficking and rumours that Messi wanted a new contract so he could be the best paid player in the world ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Meanwhile, stories emerged from Argentina that coach Tata Martino was unhappy in Barcelona and would leave the club at the end of the season.

"It does seem as if the machinery has been put into operation against Barca," commented injured goalkeeper Victor Valdes Friday and the fact is that a week has passed with nobody taking about Sunday's game.

--IANS (Posted on 21-12-2013)

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