The Spanish paper El Pais assures in its latest edition that Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho gave order to his players to "antagonize" Lionel Messi and Dani Alves in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semifinals with the end of making them lose their concentration.
According to the paper, only three players followed the directive: Alvaro Arbeloa, Xabi Alonso and Michael Essien. The rest of the team, it seems, refused. Carvalho, Varane and Khedira were the first to deny the order while Cristiano, Ozil Benzema and Callejon simply ignored their manager.
Diego Torres, who wrote the article, assures that the roster does not understand Xabi's attitude. Arbeloa, meanwhile, will do what Mourinho asks because the Portuguese manager has threatened to find his replacement if he does not improve.
During the game, both players pursued Messi and fouled him, insulted him and in one case even slapped him in the face.
- Once again Barcelona and Real Madrid will attract the attention of the world, but without a doubt the stars will be Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo. Wearing the number 10 and 7 respectively, they carry the weight of history with those clubs. Meet other club legends that have worn those numbers. Photo: AFP
- Luis Suarez, the only Spaniard to win the Golden Ball, was one of the first players to wear the No.10 for Barcelona in his six years with the Catalan club (1955-1961). Photo: Getty Images
One of the first great '7's in Real Madrid was France's Raymond Kopa. Golden Ball winner in 1958, he played alongside Di Stefano and Puskas. He spent three years with the team (156-159), winning the European Cup all three years. Photo: Getty Images
- Diego Maradona, one of the best '10's in history, took his magic to Barcelona for two years. Depsite not doing well at the Spanish club, its impossible to mention the number without Maradona in mind. Unfortunately, it was with Barcelona that he suffered the worst injury of his career. Photo: Getty Images
- Amancio Maro (first from the left) played 14 years with Real Madrid, between 1962 and 1976, one of the biggest icons for the club with 9 La Liga titles and one European Cup. With Spain, he won the 1964 European Cup, the country's first international title. Photo: Getty Images
- Romario was another great '10' at Barcelona. The Brazilian played at the club between 1993 and 1995, winning the league title in the 93-94 season and was Pichicih with 30 goals in 33 games that season. Photo: Getty Images
- With the number 7 on his back. Emilio Butragueno led the most talented generation in Real madrid history, called "La Quinta del Buitre". He won six league titles and scored 123 goals with the club. Photo: Getty Images
- With Rivaldo wearing the number '10' with Barcelona, the Catalan club won two league titles and a Copa del Rey. The Brazilian played with Barcelona between 1997 and 2002, the highlight being a hat trick against Valencia in the last game of the 200-2001 season to secure Barcelona's qualifcation to the Champions League. The third goal came on an impressive scissor kick. Photo: Getty Images
Juan Gomez Gonzalez, known as Juanito, was an amazing talent with an unpredictable temper. He played in Madrid for 10 years (19977-1987) and to this day, the fans sing '"illa, illa illa, Juanito Maravilla" in the seventh minute of games. Photo: AFP
- With Ronaldinho at the helm, Barcelona recovered their European glory after winning the Champions League in 2006. During th e 2004-2005 season, he scored twice against Real madrid in a 3-0 win, bringing the Bernabeu itself to give him a standing ovation. Photo: Getty Images
- Raul was in charge of taking the legend of the number 7 to a new level. The Spaniard wore the number for 16 seasons (1994 to 2010) and in the process became the top scorer in team history with 323 goals, winning six league titles, three Champions Leagues, two Intercontinental cups and is the top scorer in Champions League history. Photo: Getty Images
- Since inheriting the number, Lionel Messi has done things never before seen in the history of the sport. He has already won four golden balls, three Champions League and is the top scorer in team history at just 25-years Photo: Getty Images
- Since taking the number 7 from Raul, Cristiano Ronaldo has delivered in expectations (though not titles). In three seasons he has won the league, a Copa del Rey title, and is the top scorer for the club in one season with 41 goals in the 2010-2011 campaign. Cristiano has 136 goals in 125 matches, placing sixth in the history of the club. Photo: Getty Images