It is no secret that Lionel Messi has a major say in the operations at Barcelona, and with pressure building on manager Ernesto Valverde, there could be a replacement in sight.

AS are reporting that Barcelona are considering replacing Valverde with River Plate manager Marcelo Gallardo, after his impressive run with the Argentinian side.

Barca huffed and puffed, and eventually had to depend on a brace from Luis Suarez to get past Inter Milan at the Nou Camp in the UEFA Champions League (UCL) this week, sparking rumours of a possible exit for Valverde.

What’s more, it appears that Lionel Messi is in favour of his compatriot Gallardo taking over at the La Liga giants, considering he voted for the man as the best coach at the recent FIFA football awards.

Messi was himself voted as the best FIFA men’s player of the year, but Jurgen Klopp took home the award of best coach, despite Gallardo doing a brilliant job at River Plate.

However, the report also says that with a crucial part of the season coming up, Gallardo wants to focus on River Plate, and may not be willing to accept the Barca top job just yet.

It remains to be seen whether Valverde can inspire a turn around at the Catalans.