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Latest On Lionel Messi’s Departure From Barcelona

Lionel Messi, in his latest move showing his intent to leave Barcelona, did not report to Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper, the club’s training facility, on Sunday for mandatory coronavirus testing ahead of training next week, according to ESPN. 

Players were due to arrive at the club facilities just a couple weeks before the Spanish league season is set to begin with the first training session under Ronald Koeman set for Monday, but instead Messi opted to sit out as he apparently attempts to force through a move. 

Messi informed Barcelona he wants to leave the club after a rough season where the team fired two coaches, failed to win a trophy and lost 8-2 to Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarterfinals. 

On Saturday, Messi’s father and agent Jorge Messi reportedly told PSG that his son had decided that he wants to join Manchester City, with the English club believing they have the best chance to sign him, according to another report. 

Messi and Barcelona are currently at an impasse with regards to whether the Argentine superstar can even leave the club this summer. The club claims that he had to inform the club of his intention to leave by June 10 in order to leave for free, so if he wants to leave, someone will have to first trigger a €700 million release clause. 

On Sunday, La Liga issued a statement that they side with Barcelona:

Messi and his reps contend that the coronavirus pandemic mucked up the club’s schedule for the year, so he should have been allowed to trigger the termination clause whenever the season ended.

The Argentine superstar told the club Tuesday that he wanted out for the upcoming season. As things currently stand, Manchester City seem the likeliest to bring in Messi, but that’s contingent on whether Barcelona allows him to leave in the first place.


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