Barcelona president Joan Laporta has dealt Manchester City’s hopes of landing Lionel Messi a potential blow with an update on the future of the superstar.
Messi has been heavily touted for a move to the Premier League and a reunion with Pep Guardiola following a high-profile fallout with the Catalan side’s hierarchy last year.
That led to the Argentine star issuing a transfer request and publicly making his desire to leave clear, though he remained at the club for another season.
While the campaign has been a disappointment on the field, significant changes have been made behind the scenes – with Laporta winning the club’s election to return as president.
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That has provided the catalyst for an apparent change of heart from Messi, with the Argentine backed to remain at the Nou Camp.
“We’re progressing in talks to extend Leo Messi’s contract but it’s not done or signed yet. Messi wants Barcelona, he loves the club,” Laporta said.
“We’re going to meet Ronald Koeman again next week to decide his future. Next week we’re going to announce new signings.”
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Barcelona’s imminent signings are expected to include two players who are departing City, in the form of Sergio Aguero and Eric Garcia.
Argentine striker Aguero had an emotional farewell at the Etihad Stadium last weekend and could make his final City appearance in tomorrow’s Champions League final.
Meanwhile, Garcia’s expected move to Catalonia is one of the worst-kept secrets in football with the defender having snubbed a new deal at City to pursue a free transfer.