Chelsea and Manchester City have both been heavily linked with a move for the Argentina superstar but he insists that he does not want to leave Camp Nou
Lionel Messi insists has launched a scathing attack on “lies” suggesting he wants to leave Barcelona having fallen out with head coach Luis Enrique.
The Argentina superstar has been heavily linked with both Manchester City and Chelsea in the past week, with the Catalans in behind-the-scenes turmoil following the sacking of the club’s sporting director, Carles Puyol’s departure and early elections being called.
Messi and Enrique’s relationship was believed to be broken beyond repair after the 27-year-old was benched against Real Sociedad – a match Barca lost 1-0 – and it is suspected that the forward was pushing for the coach to be dismissed.
But Messi has hit back at such claims, insisting that he has no “rivalry” with the former Roma boss, and lashed out at sections of the media for throwing “sh*t” at the Catalan club.
“I never demanded anything to stay, as I have no intention of leaving,” he told Barca TV. “It is not good to look for rivalry between Luis Enrique and me, because there is none.
“We must be more united than ever. They should not throw sh*t at us. We just want to achieve things for the club.
“I never demanded anything to stay, as I have no intention of leaving.
“It is said that my father spoke with Man City, with Chelsea. It’s all lies, it’s all lies.”
Messi scored once as Barca ran out 3-1 winners over Atletico Madrid at Camp Nou on Sunday ahead of Monday’s Ballon d’Or presentation when he is competing for the best player in the world prize with Cristiano Ronaldo and Manuel Neuer.
But Messi is relaxed heading into the ceremony – which takes place on January 12 – and has praised the respective seasons of his rivals.
“Whoever wins the Ballon d’Or will deserve it, whether it is Neuer or Cristiano, who had incredible year,” he added.