Lionel Messi has broken his silence on why he sought to leave Barcelona, revealing to Goal a long-running dispute with club president Josep Maria Bartomeu and the overall direction of the Spanish club.
Messi also revealed his family’s heartbreak and tears at being told they would be leaving their home in Barcelona – but why he ultimately decided to stay for one more year after being denied an exit.
Goal’s Ruben Uria sat down with Messi for the world exclusive as the player now prepares to return to playing for Barcelona, the club he loves and has spent two decades at. In the video below Messi gives all the details on why he’s staying at Barcelona for one more year.
The main reason Messi is staying at Barcelona, the crux of it, is he didn’t want to take the club that gave him so much to court. Thankfully we’ll get to see more of this at the Camp Nou. And Messi will add to his 731 appearances for Barcelona.
“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 the entire 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.”
Messi: Why I am staying at Barcelona despite heartbreak.