Joan Laporta, one of the Presidential candidates in the forthcoming Barcelona elections, has made a bold claim that Lionel Messi will leave Camp Nou if he isn’t elected.
The move is seen as an attempt to win the heart of the club’s faithful who are desperate to see the six-time Ballon d’Or winner stay at the club. The Argentine is yet to decide on his future at the club with his current deal expiring at the end of the season.
In an interview with Marca, Laporta said: “I have a great relationship with Leo and he will consider whatever proposal I make. If I don't win, I am sure that Leo will not stay at Barcelona.
“Messi will weigh up the offer we make him I'm convinced that if the other candidates win, Messi will not remain at Barcelona. He wasn't happy during Freixa's time on the board. He's not guided just by money. He wants a competitive team to win. I'm sure he'll listen to my offer, just as I am (sure) that if someone else wins he will leave.”
The 33-year-old tried to leave last summer but was blocked by former president Josep Maria Bartomeu with the player admitting that he won’t talk about his future at the club until the end of the season; he has been linked with a move to Man City and PSG.