Lionel Messi confirms he’s staying at Barcelona
The saga is over….for now
By Mukwuzi Joseph
Lionel Messi has finally confirmed he will stay at Barcelona and has explained why he wanted to leave the Camp Nou.
The Argentina international has broken his silence on the transfer saga, saying he genuinely thought he could go for free but did not want to end up in a legal battle.
“I thought and was sure that I was free to leave, the president always said that at the end of the season I could decide if I stayed or not,” he said.
“Now they cling to the fact that I did not say it before June 10, when it turns out that on June 10 we were competing for La Liga in the middle of this awful coronavirus and this disease altered all the season.
“And this is the reason why I am going to continue in the club. Now I am going to continue in the club because the president told me that the only way to leave was to pay the €700 million clause, and that this is impossible.”
“There was another way and it was to go to trial. I would never go to court against Barca because it is the club that I love, which gave me everything since I arrived.
“It is the club of my life, I have made my life here. Barca gave me everything and I gave it everything. I know that it never crossed my mind to take Barca to court.”
The Barcelona captain has finally moved to put an end to the intense speculation surrounding his future after another day of developments.
Earlier on Friday Jorge Messi hit back at La Liga with a statement refuting their claim that his son’s €700m release clause was still valid.
La Liga, predictably, responded pretty quickly with another statement in which they announced is was absolutely valid and Messi’s camp were wrong.
Meanwhile, Messi also added that he had been thinking about leaving for a long time and was pretty critical of the way the club has been run.
“Of course I had a hard time deciding. It does not come from the Bayern result, it comes from many things. I always said I wanted to end here and I always said I wanted to stay here. That I wanted a winning project and to win titles with the club, to continue expanding the legend of Barcelona.
“And the truth is that there has been no project or anything for a long time, they juggle and cover holes as things go by. As I said before, I always thought about the welfare of my family and the club.”
The 33-year-old also said he had been telling club president Josep Maria Bartomeu “all year” that it was he felt it was time for him to step aside because he “believed that the club needed more young players, new players.”