The world of football has changed in the past few years; names like Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Marcelo have stepped away from the limelight, and young players like Pedri, Gavi, Jude Bellingham, and Camavinga have taken their place.
Pedri is a part of FC Barcelona‘s new midfield trio, where it used to be Xavi, Iniesta, and Busquets; it is now Pedri, Gavi, and De Jong. There is no doubt that the 20-year-old has respect for the legends, but he still kept Lionel Messi out of his ultimate team creation.
Pedri’s ultimate player featuring Xavi, Neymar Jr.
Pedri joined Barcelona in the summer of 2020 after he left Las Palmas to make a move to Camp Nou. The Spaniard had a great time at his new club, where he got to play alongside the one and only Lionel Messi. The seven-time Ballon d’Or winner is surely the greatest player in the world, and playing alongside him is an honour for every player.
It seems like the Argentine legend’s name did not cross the midfielder’s mind when he was naming players to create an ultimate team in an interview with ESPN UK.
ESPN UK posted a video on their official Instagram account where they were asking Pedri to create an unbeatable team using players that are best in different aspects of the game, such as dribbling, strength, speed, etc. The Spanish midfielder named various players, including his manager Xavi Hernandez and former Barcelona player Neymar Jr., but did not mention Lionel Messi’s name at all.
It is odd that the player who single-handedly conquered all of Europe is not a part of Pedri’s team. The video has over 17,000 views, and the comment section is filled with fans talking about Messi and how they were waiting to hear his name.
Messi’s contribution to Pedri’s Barcelona integration
Though Pedri has not yet provided any answers as to why he did not mention the G.O.A.T.’s name, it is surely not because he does not have respect for the Argentine. The Barcelona midfielder is surely on team Messi; he was one of those who wanted Leo to return to Camp Nou after his contract with PSG expired.
“I would like it, although it depends on Barcelona and Leo. For me, I hope he comes back,” he said.
He also talked about how Messi helped him settle in with his new team during his starting days: “During my starting days at Barça, I was shy to even go to the dressing room, and I stayed all the time in the gym. Leo (Messi) came to me and told me not to be shy; he encouraged me a lot.”
Maybe Messi’s name escaped Pedri’s mind, but there is no doubt that the Barcelona number eight loves and respects his seniors.