Lionel Messi admits that Tito Vilanova's health problems have come as a huge blow but is confident that Barcelona will overcome the 44-year-old's departure.
Vilanova announced his resignation as Blaugrana coach on Friday as he continues his battle against cancer, with the Liga holders appointing former Newell's Old Boys boss Gerardo Martino as the new man in charge.
"We're very sorry for everything that's happened to Tito but the team is strong," Messi told the club's official website.
"We have to keep on moving forward."
Messi then went on to discuss his fitness and stressed his delight to have shaken off last season's injury problems, with the Argentine playing a full 45 minutes in Wednesday's pre-season defeat to Bayern Munich.
"Luckily, my injury is a thing of the past," he enthused. "I've completely recovered. I'm very eager to start the new season."