'El Chiringuito' has claimed that Barcelona pair Lionel Messi and Gerard Piqué are at loggerheads in the wake of recent results.
There is a "complete breakdown" in Lionel Messi and Gerard Piqué's relationship at Barcelona, according to the Spanish television show 'El Chiringuito de Jugones'.
Relations between the two major dressing-room figures - who have known each other since their days together in Barça's youth set-up - are said to have hit the rocks in the wake of the Blaugrana's recent poor form, which has seen Ernesto Valverde's men draw two and lose one of their last three LaLiga games.
'El Chiringuito': Piqué accuses Messi of shirking media duties
'El Chiringuito' reports that Piqué is not happy that Messi, who is now Barça's club captain, does not speak to the media more often, particularly in times of adversity for the LaLiga giants. "Piqué is critical of Messi for not facing up [to the press] when the going gets tough," the programme claimed on Monday night. "He feels that Leo only talks when he's not in Europe, with Argentina."
Messi reportedly rounds on Piqué over porous defence
Messi, meanwhile, is said to have hit back at the defender by pinning the blame for Barça's current bad run of results on the Catalans' backline: "He has told him that they're letting in too many goals," 'El Chiringuito' said. "He has made it plain to Piqué that [he thinks] the defence is not offering the protection it should."