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Playing with Messi too stressful for some team-mates, says Juan Carlos Unzue

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Some interesting insight from the former assistant coach

Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona looks on during the UEFA... Photo by Nicolò Campo/LightRocket via Getty Images

Former Barcelona assistant coach Juan Carlos Unzue has offered some insight into what it’s like to play with Lionel Messi and admits that it can be pretty stressful.

Unzue says one of the reasons for Messi’s success is that he always demands the best which can make it tough for his team-mates.

The 53-year-old also spoke about Messi’s desire to leave Barcelona over the summer and how shocked he was to hear the news.

“What has kept Messi (where he is) is ambition and how to live with moments of stress. He self-demands to himself to keep being the best and as a result, also wants the best around him, team-mates, physio, or coach. That produces a great stress that some team-mates are not capable of bearing.

“The truth is it surprised me that Messi wanted to leave, but knowing the club and Leo, I understand that he might have very, very important reasons for taking this decision. What I was convinced of was that if, in the end he stayed, he’d give his best and maintain his ambitions.”

Source | Sport

Unzue went on to speak about new boss Ronald Koeman and said he thought the Dutchman was managing Messi and the team pretty well despite having arrived at the club at “a messed-up time.”