Club Chief Wants Messi To Stay ‘Forever’
Barcelona are ready to open talks with Lionel Messi over a new contract for the Argentine.
Messi signed a deal two years ago that will keep him at the Nou Camp until 2021, but club president Josep Maria Bartomeu has told ESPN that he wants the 31-year-old to remain with the La Liga side forever.
“We want him to have a really long career so we can keep on enjoying him,” Bartomeu said.
“Lionel has managed to break down borders. Everyone admires him and he’s applauded at other stadiums by rival fans
“We would like to renew his contract, that’s the idea. He is young – you can see that – and he still has two years on his deal. He’s always improving, always innovating. I believe he still has many years in front of him and in the coming months we will sit down with him so that he has many more years at Barcelona.
“Messi is a one-club man. It’s more than what he does on the pitch — his relationship with Barca will last forever. I use the example of Pele, who was always at Santos. We want Messi to always be at Barca, whether that’s playing or linked to the club [when he’s retired].”
Messi is Barcelona’s record goalscorer with 594 goals and he recently surpassed Andres Iniesta with the second-highest number of appearances for the club with 676. Only Xavi has made more appearances with 767.