When Gerard Pique made the announcement of his retirement this past Thursday, it came as a shock to the fans, even though the 35-year-old had seen his importance within the Barcelona setup decline this season.
Pique had been relegated to the fifth-choice centre-back under manager Xavi Hernandez. His poor performances in a few games also led to whistles from the fans while he was widely criticised in the media.
Amidst speculations that the club wanted to part ways with the veteran defender, he decided to end things on his own terms and announced his retirement.
Pique played his last home game for Barcelona against Almeria on Saturday and it remains to be seen whether he will be involved against Osasuna later tonight. Either way, the 35-year-old will no longer be an active footballer starting tomorrow.
And according to journalist Sique Rodriguez, Pique leaves Barcelona with his relationship with club president Joan Laporta completely fractured.
The Barça supremo pointed out on more than one occasion that some players were unwilling to accept pay cuts in the summer to help the club, seemingly hinting towards Pique and Sergio Busquets.
It could have played a role in the relationship between the defender and the president sourly, with the report claiming that Laporta wanted to hold a joint press conference following the announcement of the retirement, which Pique declined.
It is also claimed that apart from Laporta, the 35-year-old is also upset with club director Mateu Alemany, who he thinks is a ‘liar’, as well as Xavi because the manager was ‘not sensitive’.
It seems that Pique will be calling time on his illustrious career with his relationship with Laporta, Alemany and Xavi ending badly.