Bayern Munich boss Pep Guardiola admits he was saddened to see Barcelona star Lionel Messi sustain a serious knee injury.
Messi suffered a knee ligament tear in the 2-1 win over Las Palmas and is set to be out for up to two months as a result.
The Argentina captain flourished into one of the greatest footballers in the modern game during Guardiola’s time as head coach at Camp Nou between 2008 and 2012, and the latter is keen to see him get back into action quickly.
“I hope he will return as soon as possible,” said Guardiola. “I did not like [hearing] the news about his injury at all. I know he is one of those players who always wants to play. It is a pity that he cannot play for the next seven to eight weeks.”
Guardiola has been a supporter of the Catalonia independence movement in recent months and pro-independence parties won an overwhelming majority in the regional elections held at the end of last week.
Speculation persists over whether Barcelona will be able to compete in Spain’s top flight should the Catalan region gain autonomy from Spain, but Guardiola believes this would be damaging to the club and the competition.
“Catalonia has spoken, nearly 80 per cent have voted and parliament has a majority for independence. Now the politicians need to speak,” he added.
“A problem for the Catalans is that Barcelona play in La Liga. It’s about personal situations, financial opportunities. But of course it wouldn’t be good for Barca, it wouldn’t be good for La Liga.”