Barcelona News: President accepts club are planning for life after Messi but confident the skipper will pen a new deal

  • Though he is not showing any signs of slowing down, Messi, at 31, is not a long term solution for Barcelona.
Modified 20 Feb 2019, 10:22 IST

Lionel Messi is 31 now
Lionel Messi is 31 now

What's the news?

Barcelona's president, Josep Maria Bartomeu, is hopeful that Lionel Messi will sign a new contract with the club but also insists that they are planning for a future without the Argentine superstar.

In case you didn't know...

Regarded as one of the best players in the world, Lionel Messi joined Barcelona academy at the age of 13 and is an integral part of the club since making his professional debut in 2004.

The Argentine is currently the Barcelona's record goalscorer in all competitions and netted 582 goals in 667 games for the Blaugrana thus far. He has also helped Barcelona win numerous trophies.

However, at 31, he is moving towards his inevitable decline and needs to be replaced by the club at some point or another. His current contract with the club will expire in 2021 and he is yet to sign a new deal extending his stay at the Camp Nou.

The heart of the matter

Speaking to Le Figaro(via goal), Josep Maria Bartomeu reveals that the club started to plan for a future without Messi, but he is confident that the 31-year old will pen down a new deal with the Catalonian club.

He said:

"We are already thinking about it, but it is a future still far away". "He is a young player, he is 31-years-old, his performance is very good, he plays even better and better, I do not know how he does it!
"He has a contract for two seasons, but I think he will extend his career beyond 2021. But you have to think of young talent. When Messi no longer plays, no one can replace him. It's impossible.

He further elaborated

"Behind Messi, there is nobody. Neither in Barca nor anywhere else. The coach of the day will have to think of how the team will play [but] the idea of Barca football will remain the same."

What's next?

Barcelona will play Sevilla next in the league before facing Real Madrid in the second leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final.

Published 20 Feb 2019, 10:22 IST
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