Barcelona president resignation ‘victory’ for Messi says pundit
Barcelona star Lionel Messi is ‘being pressured’ into staying at the Nou Camp by his own family, according to reports. The Argentina international is a top Manchester City transfer target, while Paris Saint-Germain are keen on signing the veteran as well. His long-term future in Catalonia is currently uncertain, with his contract expiring at the end of the campaign.
Messi attempted to leave Barcelona back in the summer, believing he was entitled to leave the Nou Camp on a free transfer.
However, the 33-year-old was denied a move away and has since stayed put.
Messi has scored seven La Liga goals from 14 matches so far but Barcelona have struggled, with Ronald Koeman’s side currently sitting sixth in the table.
Speculation over his future continues to rumble on, with Manchester City currently the favourites to secure his signature at the end of the campaign.
PSG are also hoping to land Messi, especially knowing how close the Argentina international is to Neymar.
But Sport say Messi’s own family are pressuring him into staying at Barcelona because they don’t want to leave the city behind.
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He’s been at the club for the entirety of his professional career and Barcelona has become his home, hence why his wife and children don’t want to uproot somewhere else.
However, he’s said to be in regular contact with Guardiola about a potential move to the Premier League.
And it seems as though Barcelona must do more on the pitch to avoid the 33-year-old from quitting the club at the end of the season.
Messi recently hit out at former Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu, insisting the Spaniard failed to deliver on promises he’d made before his exit last year.
“He [lied] about many things,” Messi said.
“Honestly, so many, but I prefer not to go into private things that happened – but I can assure you it was many things over several years.”
He then added: “I had been telling [Bartomeu] for six months that I wanted to leave and asking for his help and he just said ‘no, no, no.’
“So, I sent the burofax as a last resort to show I was serious, to make it official.
“I’m eternally grateful to the club for everything but it felt like a cycle had ended and I needed a change.
“I knew this would be a transition year and I want to fight for the Champions League and league titles.
“The president didn’t want to let me go and then he started to leak things to make me look like the bad guy.
“Then everything that happened happened, but I am still calm that I did what was right at that moment.”
Messi is now free to negotiate a move away from Barcelona but insists he’ll wait until the summer before making a decision on his future.
“No [I won’t talk with other clubs because] I don’t have anything clear until the end of the year,” the Argentina international added.
“I am going to wait for the season to finish. The important thing is to think about the team and to try and win titles, not to get distracted with other issues.
“I don’t know what will happen. I am focused on what we have in front of us over the next six months.
“It would not be right to tell you what I am going to do after that because even I don’t know.”
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