Johan Cruyff: Barcelona should have sold Messi when they signed Neymar
Barcelona legend Johan Cruyff says the club should have sold Lionel Messi once they had plans in place to bring Neymar to the club.
The Dutchman reckons factors such as set-piece duties and the two marquee players representing rival sports brands could cause friction for the Catalan giants.
He said: “With Neymar on board, I would have planned for the possibility of selling Messi, and some would agree with that, others not. You are talking about a team, its players, the things around it… There are too may things at stake. That’s why it’s so difficult to manage such a top class squad.”
Cruyff added: “It’s like the free kicks. Neymar is very good at taking them. And Messi has already shown he is. Who’s going to take them? Or the fact that Neymar and Barcelona are with Nike while Leo is with Adidas. These are situations that could cause problems.”
Speaking to Spanish newspaper Marca, Cruyff said that his first preference would not to have been signing Neymar in the first place.
Asked if he would have risked pairing the two players, he said: “No, I wouldn’t have signed Neymar.”