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Lionel Messi: FC Barcelona talisman admits fears of Neymar transfer to

Lionel Messi: FC Barcelona talisman admits fears of Neymar transfer to”

It nearly forced Messi out of the club he joined in 2001 as a 13-year-old.

"I felt that I was being very mistreated and did not want follow here".

"When we controlled a little better that situation, I think that we were closer to compete with them". He had said it, he wanted a change, to leave Paris.

There would have been no shortage of suitors had he gone through with his intention but Messi accepts no-one actually considered he was serious.

He added: "I had my doors open to many clubs but I never got an official offer because everyone knew I really wanted to stay".

"Today it is clearer that my idea is to finish here", Messi said.

Instead he is putting his family first.

Xavi Simons, a 16-year-old midfield talent who came through the ranks at Barca's famous La Masia academy, shocked many when he signed for the French giants three months ago.

"Sincerely, at that time, I thought about leaving", he said.

As for his worst years, Messi admits a high profile tax case almost forced him into quitting Barcelona.

"There was a time when I ended up exhausted by a lot of circumstances, it has happened several times, especially in 2013 and 2014, with the problems with the treasury and everything that came out. I have two years left on my deal and there's no better place to play than Barcelona, the best club in the world, but I need to play and not just enjoy walks around the city and the beach".

"From my childhood I have dreamed of playing for Newell's because of what football means in Argentina, but sometimes one has to prioritise the family".

"I would not like to change the friendships of the children or their social circle, I would not like this to break".

Messi and Ronaldo were last seen laughing and smiling in each other's company at the Champions League draw in August. We froze and the memory of Rome (when they lost 3-0 the previous season after a 3-1 home first-leg quarter-final win) came into our heads. "It was nothing to do with Valverde".



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