It’s been a rough week for Lionel Messi; the 34-year-old has been on the receiving end of criticism following the first-leg match against Real Madrid. The Argentine missed the penalty kick that would have been the game’s first goal.
The capital club would be able to come away with the win after Kylian Mbappé scored late in the second half for the 1-0 win. Manager Mauricio Pochettino spoke to the media, where he came to the defense of his player, saying Messi had a good game despite the missed penalty kick.
“No, he’s the best player in the world. Messi is football. If you want to explain football to anyone, it’s Leo Messi. I don’t think a missed penalty affects his confidence,” Pochettino said during his press conference.
“If someone says that, he doesn’t know this sport. The team played well, and it was thanks to the way he interpreted the game. He had a very good game. He allowed the team to play together.”