‘Lionel Messi is a Magician – Samuel Umtiti

Samuel Umtiti confessed in his recent interview that Bacercelona’s style of play during Pep Guardiola’s reign (2008-2012) didn’t impress him much. The Frenchman said he’s very happy to wave goodbye to their tiki-taka style since May 2014 when Luis Enrique was appointed head coach.

“It was less passionate.

“The period with Ronaldinho, Deco, when they won the Champions League,” Umtiti answered when questioned about when he first took notice of the Blaugrana.

“Frank Rijkaard was the coach and I loved watching them play, their style, the way they kept the ball, moved it around. No other team did it like them. There was an incredible winning culture. The players never seemed satisfied. I almost never missed one of their matches.

“I said to my friends, ‘I adore Barca but when they keep possession for 10 years it’s boring’. Later their play changed again,” the defender says, adding that the club’s current attacking style is well appreciated by his teammates

However, the footballer who joined Barca from Lyon just last summer, added that teammate Lionel Messi sees them like immovable objects. The 23-year-old admits this makes him marvel at what “mysterious talents” the famous No. 10 has got.

Image: Samuel Umtiti

“He has so much ease on the ball,” Umtiti told France Football.

“His talent is innate although he works a lot. In training he does things that are out of the norm.

“Sometimes he dribbles past everyone as if we were nothing more than cones, including me.”

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