- Lionel Messi could leave FC Barcelona next summer.
- It is the proposal of one of the main authorities of the Catalan club, Graham Hunter.
- At ESPN, Hunter said there are several reasons why the Argentine maestro should and could leave Camp Nou in June.
- This includes his desire to win trophies, the lack of quality at the club and the presence of a release clause in his contract.
- Here is why this report is wrong and why Messi remains in Barcelona.
- Read more about our football coverage here.
- Visit the Business Insider website for more stories.
Lionel Messi should leave FC Barcelona next summer, one of the leading authorities at the Catalan club has suggested.
Graham Hunter, who wrote the book "Barca: The Making of the Greatest Team in the World," recently told ESPN that there are a number of reasons why the Argentine maestro should and could leave Camp Nou at the end of the season .
Here are Hunter's three main arguments:
- Messi, 32, wants to continue to win trophies at the twilight of his career.
- His Barcelona teammates are either aging, struggling or not good enough.
- A "release clause" in his contract means he is open to leaving.
But this is wrong. Here's why …
Barcelona is the best place to be for Messi to win trophies
"Do I want to waste the last two or three big years of my career while those in charge have a continued hash of renewal and revitalization for us to win in Europe? Win a treble?" said Hunter, saying as if he were the Argentinian.
Unless Messi becomes a "traveling man" over the next few years and jumps from league to league in an effort to collect trophies – he will see his career at a club.
And if the criteria for being in said club is that they have to win big trophies: no where in world football is a better place for Messi to be than Barcelona.
In the last three years, while the club has been in suspected turmoil, Barcelona have won six major domestic awards, including back-to-back La Liga titles.
The only clubs in Europe with multiple titles in similar competitions are Paris Saint Germain and FC Bayern Munich – seven trophies each, albeit in less competitive leagues.
However, Juventus has matched Barcelona's numbers of six, though again with little challenge, while Manchester City have five, Real Madrid have three, and Chelsea have two. Liverpool, the current champion of Europe, failed to match his success on the continent of his national league at home.
Barcelona's last UEFA Champions League trophy was won in 2015. But with Real Madrid's dominance of Europe ending last term, this year's competition is an open playing field and this season's undefeated Barca has as much chance of winning it as anyone else .
Messi's teammates may be aging, but they are not fighting
"At a time when your best-playing partner (Luis Suarez) is slowing down when" fresh blood "like Ousmane Dembele and Antoine Griezmann have yet to turn on the blue touch paper … it wouldn't be natural for Messi to look around and just make sure there is no more juicy grass elsewhere? "Hunter said.
Suarez, age 33 in January, has scored eight goals in all competitions so far this season. That is more than what he has averaged in recent seasons.
With Griezmann, the media seems determined to prove that the Frenchman is not good enough, nor that he can cohabit with Messi. But four goals and three assists is not a bad return for a player who is reportedly celebrating. And as for the pair, Messi says, who has won three of the five matches he started with Griezmann in that there is no problem.
"It's a lie I didn't love Griezmann," Messi told RAC1. "I remember statements that I made that he was one of the best and the best are welcome. He comes from playing differently than what we do here, but we have no doubt that he will do He is a high quality and intelligent player and will end up adapting. "
As for Dembele, he scored last 21 years in just 21 years 14 goals. When Lionel Messi was the same age, he managed nine, and that was without the pressure of a $ 144 million price tag on his head.
If there was something blatantly negative to highlight, it would be Barcelona’s defense that has conceded 16 goals this season, but with the command of Samuel Umtiti back from an injury, things are likely to improve.
In early September, Spanish news publication El Pais wrote about an apparent clause in Messi's contract that would allow him to leave the club next summer.
Hunter assumes that the presence of said clause was leaked to the media by Messi's own team in an attempt to test the interest of "the world's big clubs".
"Who leaked the details of Messi's contract to the newspaper El Pais in September? FC Barcelona? Messi's entourage?" he said. "If it was someone from Team Messi, it's a flying exercise. Basically, what exactly is there for Leo in the unlikely event that he chooses to leave? & # 39;"
This clause was added in 2017, around a time he talked openly about his desire to one day play back in his home country with the boy's club Newell's Old Boys.
According to Marca, that clause can only be activated to leave a club outside Europe. In other words: Newells.
Fast forward two years and things seem to have changed. He is yet to start meaningful talks on a new deal, but made it clear last month that he no longer has such a strong desire to return to Argentina.
"If they want me, I would obviously be happy to be at Barca," he told RAC1. “I repeat that my goal has always been to stay here.
"Nothing has changed; it's as it always has been. Every time it becomes clear that my goal and my family is to end (my career) here."
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