Lionel Messi set to play for Barcelona in 2020-21Last updated on Sep 05, 2020, 12:51 pm
Lionel Messi is set to stay at Barcelona for the upcoming 2020-21 season.
The Argentine handed in a transfer request on August 25, saying he wanted to exercise a clause in his contract which he said allowed him to leave for free.
However, Barca quashed his hopes and said that the £624m release clause would have to be met.
Here are further details.
Messi lashes out at Barcelona president
In an interview with Goal, Messi said Josep Maria Bartomeu didn't keep his word.
"I thought and was sure that I was free to leave. I told the president and, well, he always said that at end of the season I could decide if I wanted to go or if I wanted to stay and in the end he did not keep his word."
It's not possible to pay £624m release clause
Messi said that he is now going to continue at Barca as paying the £624m release will be impossible by any other 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 700m clause, and that this is impossible," the Barcelona legend said.
Messi had to inform Barcelona before June 10
Messi stated that he had to inform the club about his desire to leave before June 10.
"Now they cling to the fact that I did not say it before 10 June, 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 all the season," he added.
I would never go to court against Barca, says Messi
Messi said he would never go to court against Barca.
"There was another way and it was to go to trial. I would never go to court against Barca because it is the club that I love, which gave me everything since I arrived."
"It is the club of my life, I have made my life here," the Argentine added.
Barca endured a difficult 2019-20 campaign
Messi's announcement had come 11 days after Barcelona's humiliating 8-2 loss to Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League quarters.
It was one of the worst defeats in Messi's glittering career and in the club's history. The defeat capped a difficult season for Barcelona, who failed to win a single trophy since 2007-08. They had also seen Real Madrid win La Liga. .
Messi had requested personal meeting with Barcelona hierarchy
Messi had requested a personal meeting with the Barcelona hierarchy to discuss about his transfer request.
According to a report in Sky Sports, Messi wanted his lawyers to be present with the intention of finding a way out of the impasse over his contract clause.
Messi's father insisted his son could leave for free, only for La Liga to back Barca's stance.
Messi wanted to join Manchester City
Messi and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola wanted to renew their partnership.
This had put City in a prime position to land the Argentine.
Besides City, the likes of Inter Milan and Paris Saint-Germain were also keen to get Messi.
It was reported that senior Barca figures expected Messi to join City.
But the release clause has dealt a blow to everyone involved.
Messi wants to compete at the highest level
Messi said that he wanted to compete at the highest level and win trophies. "I looked further and I want to compete at the highest level, win titles, compete in the Champions League," he said.