The exit of Messi meant for LaLiga like the steal of an art piece for a museum. The provision of individual talent was left in a worrying situation compared to the rest of the big leagues. However, and despite it is impossible to replace Lionel, this has allowed to value more other players that have tremendous qualities and who are now sustaining the attractiveness of Spanish football.
We currently find three players that are a step above the rest regarding to their individual level. Karim Benzema and Mikel Oyarzabal were in charge of taking over Messi as the stars of LaLiga. Now, the opinion on both of them has always been excellent. However, the other member of the ‘top 3’ has not received the appreciation he deserves for the show he has been providing the fans with since he arrived to Spain. We are talking about Nabil Fekir.
The Franco-Algerian has reached his most completed version with Betis, specially into the start of this new season. He struggled to take the leadership, but now his adaptation is totally finished. Fekir smiles with the ball and the ball enjoys when it is on his feet. He is pure show. The creativeness from the World Champion is not within reach for most of the players. Furthermore, he is able to make an impact on his teammates’s performing: everything works out better whenever Fekir leads the flow of the game.
On the other hand, numbers back him: he is without any doubt one of the players that is most faulted per game and last season he was the biggest offensive exponent in LaLiga only behind the now exiled Messi and Bryan Gil.
Now, if anything stands out in order to affirm that we are witnessing the total version of Nabil Fekir, that is the management from Manuel Pellegrini. The Chilean coach has barely giving him any rest since August and he does not plan to for now. This is what he had to say on the pre-game press conference ahead of his visit to the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium:
“I already said that rotation is not always needed, the players are ready. It depends on the physical and mental aspect”
Manuel Pellegrini on the rotation of his roster before the Atlético vs Betis game
The Heliópolis neighborhood is having a party. Betis are in Champions League positions and are willing to battle for them without all the spotlights on them. The connection between the team and the fans is huge and the performing by Pellegrini’s players calls for optimism. Now, this is not about a sprint race, but a marathon. The ‘Verdiblancos’ are facing a season full of physical and mental demand.
Part of that responsibility to accomplish those goals and dreams relies on giving regularity to that sublime level from the playmaker. For the good of football and specially LaLiga, let´s hope for the show of Fekir to continue.
Translated by Guillermo Bermejo.
Main image: Twitter @RealBetis