The Return of the King
Jan 21, 2014 11:17 AM EST
One of the first things that came to my mind when the clock hit midnight on Dec. 31 was the return of Messi in 2014. Why the high expectations? Well first of all I was devastated when got injured few months ago, because I knew what it meant, I knew that after a year full of injuries Messi was not going to win a 5th Ballon d’Or in a row, I knew his critics were going to criticize him for playing charity games during the summer instead of resting, and I knew that Barcelona needed him to keep the winning streak they had at the moment.
Messi, after missing the first game of 2014, finally returned in a Copa Del Rey game against Getafe. Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino decided to give him only the last 30 minutes. Everybody was excited to see this new Messi, a video had been made public of a training session of Messi in Argentina and he looked in great shape, rumors said that he had lost 5 KG (~11 pounds). It took a few minutes to see a new Messi, he was running, smiling, he was different than the Messi we had seen in 2013. It took him 30 minutes to thrill his fans again, and as a present he scored two beautiful goals. Once again after that game we saw a clash of opinions those who loved him made the claim that the King was back, or as he is known D10S (God in Spanish) had returned. His critics went ballistic, claiming that Getafe was not a big enough rival, and that he would have to prove himself in the next game against Atletico.
Against Atletico, Messi did no play the entire 90 minutes, he only played one half and his performance was that of another terrestrial player. His next game was once again against Getafe where he scored another two goals, one of them as beautiful as a goal can be. His latest game against Levante was very disappointing to his fans, and his critics are now claiming that Messi’s best years are behind him now, but at 26, I believe, the best is yet to come.
In reality Messi has only played 255 minutes since he came back, and has scored 4 goals, to give an average of a goal every 63.75 minutes. If it was any other player in the world we wouldn’t be questioning him, but we are talking about Messi, his standards are not those of the other mortals, and even though he has show some out of this world moves, he still has to improve his game. The king is back, but he is not the king yet.