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New Barcelona technical director Ramon Planes has backed Lionel Messi to remain with Barcelona.
The 33-year-old has reportedly sent in a transfer request after falling out with the Barcelona board and is now keen to leave the Spanish giants.
Planes didn’t deny Messi’s desire to leave the club, but insists that the club will do everything possible to keep Messi.
Some reports have claimed that Messi has vowed not to return for training, but Planes however denied that.
“It was very important news, we have always said that we want to build the new Barcelona around Messi, the best player in history,” said Planes, who replaced Eric Abidal as technical director last week.
“We can’t have a public dispute between Barcelona and Messi because neither side deserves that.
“Messi has not told us that he’s not going to show up for training.
“We do not contemplate any contractual exit, because we want Messi to stay.
“Internally we have been working for long hours to find the best solution for the club and for Leo.
“Anyone that understands a little bit about football wants to have Leo in their team. It is an immense pleasure to see a player like him. He is a winner, Barcelona are winners and we want to get back to winning.”
There is a dispute between Messi and Barcelona over his release clause. Barcelona has a clause which allows Messi to leave for free, but it expired on June 10. But Barca would rather hold on to Messi’s release clause of £630m.
Meanwhile, Messi’s camp is arguing that the clause remains active as the coronavirus pandemic halted Barcelona’s season and the club’s campaign did not end until their 8-2 defeat to Bayern Munich in the Champions League on August 14.
We’d see how this drama unfolds.