Bartomeu: Messi is happy at Barcelona

The Argentina international hinted earlier in the week that he could quit the Catalan club but the Blaugrana supremo insists that the four-time Ballon d’Or winner is going nowhere

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has revealed that Lionel Messi’s father has assured him that the forward wants to stay at Camp Nou.

As reported by Goal, Messi is considering his future with the Liga outfit and publicly hinted at a possible move away from Camp Nou while on Argentina duty earlier this week.

The forward and his father are currently at the centre of a tax investigation in Spain but Jorge Messi has insisted that his son is still happy at Barcelona.

Bartomeu has now supported that view, with the Blaugrana supremo dismissing reports that the four-time Ballon d’Or winner is demanding an improved contract to remain at Camp Nou.

“Leo is really happy at our club,” the 51-year-old Catalan told 8TV.

“His father has told me so, although [Leo] has been under great deal of pressure off the pitch …

“[But] he hasn’t asked us for a new contract renewal. He’s happy.

“We always help the players at this club and [former coach Pep] Guardiola also said the same a few years ago.

“Leo is happy at Barca.”

Messi’s fitness and form have been the subject of much debate over the past year, with some pundits suggesting that he is suffering the effects of a succession of injury problems, and others claiming he has fallen out of love with the game.

However, Bartomeu says that no matter what the critics say, Messi remains the finest player on the planet.

“They’re more concerned with him vomiting than his records,” he argued.

“They want to beat him off the pitch; on the pitch he’s the No. 1.”

Messi, who led Argentina to the final of this year’s World Cup, has netted 11 goals in 15 games in all competitions for Barca so far this season.