Rumours are flying around the future of Argentine superstar Lionel Messi ever since it was reported that he had rejected a contract extension at Barcelona. However, Josep Maria Bartomeu, the club president, is convinced that the 29-year-old will finish his career at Camp Nou.
Messi, who is widely regarded as the best player in the world, is yet to sign a contract extension with the club. While his current deal runs out in the summer of 2018, if reports emerging last week are to be believed, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner has rejected a contract extension.
According to ESPN FC, it was earlier reported that the club itself were not very appalled by the reports and remained confident of tying down their star forward. On Wednesday, Bartomeu tread a similar path as he was speaking at the announcement of a new shirt deal with Japanese technology company, Rakuten.
He said, "I believe we've got a team with incredible players, all of them. There is nonetheless a leader, of course, Leo Messi, he is well-known and popular all over the world.
Bartomeu exuded confidence as he said that everyone at the club believes that Messi, who is one of the pioneers of the La Blaugrana’s current generation, will end his career at the Catalonian club.
"We're all convinced, we're all positive Leo Messi will end his sporting career in Barca. All the members of Barca believe this is how it has to be, because he is the player that in the last few years has brought us sporting success,'' he said.
There have been rumours flying around with reports suggesting that former boss Pep Guardiola is keen on bringing the creative attacker to Manchester City, and Manchester United are also keeping tabs on the situation.
The diminutive world beater has won many accolades both with Barcelona and individually. Messi himself had previously expressed his dream of finishing his career at his boyhood club Newell’s Old Boys in Argentina and it remains to be seen how the future pans out.
Meanwhile, Barcelona have signed a lucrative four-year deal with Rakuten that could become the highest in football sponsorship history with add-ons. This new deal might just be what Barcelona needed as it helps them offer a much improved deal to their main man.