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Betting Shop: Toshack believes that Messi shouldn’t be blamed
By Andrew Scott Tuesday, 22 April 2014 12:28
Pay per head sportsbooks saw that the Catalan giants had a very tough week under coach Gerardo Martino, as they lost three games in a row all competitions, something that disappointed many fans and betting shops.
Atletico Madrid eliminated Barca in the UEFA Champions League’s quarter-finals, and betting shops could see that their hopes for a La Liga title were given a huge blow after a loss to Granada saw them fall seven points adrift of Diego Simeone’s side.
The team’s troubles got even worse after Real Madrid won late on in the Copa del Rey’s final, and now betting shops and pay per head sportsbooks wonder what’s next for Barca after this.
Barca’s fans and many people with a betting site were upset to see that Messi didn’t score during that period, but price per head services learned that Toshack, who in two separate spells took charge of Real, said that criticism of the Argentina international is not fair.
“It’s cruel to blame Messi. You can’t put the blame on him. Messi’s at a high level but more is always expected from him,” Toshack said.
“Neymar is a player at (Gareth) Bale’s level but all the problems off the field haven’t helped anything.
“Everyone was talking about Barca being the best team in history and they were one of the best of all time, but you have to renew before it’s too late.
“Fix the roof before the water comes in. Don’t expect to be able to fix the roof when the water’s already coming in.
“Everything that has happened at Barca is taking its toll.”
Martino’s future was cast into doubt after the club’s bad results, with reports linking him with a return to Argentina when the season comes to an end, and many people with a betting site would like to see what’s next for the coach.
However, Toshack and pay per head sportsbooks believe that injuries to several key players took their toll.
“Injuries to Victor Valdes, Gerard Pique and Carles Puyol, Tata Martino has had no luck,” the 65-year-old said.
“I don’t like Javier Mascherano as a centre-back. It’s a very important area of the pitch.
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“Barca have a job on this summer. They have to sign a centre-back.”