On Sunday, Barcelona fans are facing something that is close to their worst nightmare. The sworn enemies of Real Madrid are in the city and Lionel Messi is out of the game, taking care of a broken arm.
The side of Julen Lopetegui is fighting, but the absence of Messi would offer an understandable stimulus for any team, let alone one frequently on the receiving end of his most notable exploits
In all competitions, five times The winner of the Golden Ball has scored 26 goals in 38 games against Los Blancos, with 18 in 24 LaLiga matches. Both releases remain as records in the rich history of the match.
Since not long after Messi became a talent that defined the generation under Pep Guardiola a decade ago, the phenomenon called "Messidependencia" has been discussed regularly.
Under the current boss Ernesto Valverde, and with the intriguing midfielders Xavi and Andrés Iniesta are no longer in the Camp Nou, the suspicion is that Barça depends on Messi more than ever.
But do your LaLiga numbers support it? With the help of our friends in Opta, we did an excavation to try to find out.
Guardiola and greatness
Messi already had an impressive classic hat-trick for his name when he was a teenager, notifying his unlimited potential in 2007. It was when Guardiola arrived the following year when he began to enter in a football territory not known.
Guardiola changed Messi to a role of 'false nine' during the first stages of the Classic of May 2009. at santiago bernabeu. His front striker scored twice in a 6-2 demolition and would come to redefine his new position for the modern era.
Cristiano Ronaldo arrived in the Spanish capital while Madrid responded to Barca's three-pointer in Guardiola's inaugural season, starting a long-running debate on
. At that time, Ronaldo's disciples argued that his man could win games for his account, while Messi thrived as the member of the astute machine of Barcelona.
However, he established a remarkably consistent record of being responsible for about half of his team's goals. The 138 strikes and 55 assists of Messi accounted for 46.84 percent of the goals of LaLiga Barca under Guardiola, while his winning percentage fell from 77.9 percent to 62.5 percent when he did not play.