Ronald Koeman chatted about our old pal Lionel Messi this week. In an interview with Voetbal International, Koeman said that the Argentine was a menace in training. Demanding the best out of both managerial personal and the players themselves.
“Of course he had good players around him, but he made the difference. Everyone seems better than they are because of him. This is not a criticism, but an observation.
“When we did a finishing practice during training, there were sometimes players who started to hit easy balls, a bit of fooling around. But with Messi everything was: boom, boom, boom, boom. Never frills, everything functional. And always wanted to win everything.
“We always play a rondo before training. If the ball goes around 20 times, then the players in the middle must have an extra turn. If that happens three times in a row, the players will form two lines and the two who were in the middle then walk through and get taps on their heads and such.
“I asked Messi if it had happened to him once. ‘Yes, once,’ he said. In all those years. With him, the older players never lost an exercise against the young. It happened once and Messi was seriously angry about that for a week. Really, a tyrant.”
Koeman | Source
These are only some of the quotes from Koeman on the topic. I’d encourage everyone to go read the entire interview. Some pretty interesting insight from the Dutchman.