- Lionel Messi blames Barcelona board for botched Neymar deal
- The Argentine believes the chiefs did not give their best to bring back the Brazilian
- Messi also said that Barca crashed out of Champions League last term after failing to score a goal at Anfield
Argentine star Lionel Messi has questioned Barcelona board following their failure to land Brazil sensation Neymar Jr from Paris Saint Germain this summer.
The 27-year-old joined the French League champions in a world record fee valued around £198 million in 2017.
But his career in Paris has been plagued with series of injury - such that he missed the FIFA World Cup in 2018, and this year he was not available for Copa America championship.
The Brazilian was close to returning to Camp Nou this summer but PSG frustrated the player's return to Spain on the transfer deadline day.
And Messi believes the club could have secured the services of their former player if they really wanted.
Messi was said to have told Diario Sport in an interview that: "Do you think Barca did everything possible to sign him [Neymar]?"
He replied his own question by saying: "I don't know, I really don't know if they did everything possible.
"I didn't have much information about how the negotiations were going to say if Barcelona did everything possible.
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"I don't know what happened with the board. I know that I spoke with Ney and he told me how things were going. He was desperate to come back."
The Argentine further stated that: "I would love Neymar to have signed.
"I understand that some people were against it. And that is normal after everything that happened with Ney and for the way he left the club.
"It's logical that there are a lot of people who do not want him to come back. But thinking about things on a sporting level he is one of the best in the world.
"Obviously he would have increased our possibilities of getting the results that we all want. I would have loved it if he had come back."
When asked about Antoine Griezmann's arrival to Camp Nou, Messi told Sport that he knew next to nothing about the Frenchman's deal.
He said that: "Very little. I came back injured and did not train with the team.
"They went on tour and when they came back I have not been in the same dressing room [as him] that much. But I am there in training [now]. We will have the chance to share many things."
Messi also urged Ousmane Dembele to have a change of character if he wants to contend for the world best player's status in his career.
"I believe he's an impressive talent who can do whatever he wants', he added. "He needs to make that change to be more professional, to put that idea into his head, so he can be a success at Barcelona like he wants to be."
On the other hand, Messi admitted that failing to score an away goal in their Champions League semifinal clash last season, caused their exit from the competition.
The Catalans suffered 4-0 defeat at Anfield in the second leg of their last four encounter, having won the reverse fixture at Camp Nou 3-0.
"The English stadiums help their teams a lot," he told SPORT. "One bad performance, even if you have a lead, could see you be eliminated.
"It’s so important to score goals away from home if you are going to win the Champions League.
"When we won the Champions League, this was the case too. If I remember correctly, we scored in every away match.
"On top of everything else we did well, we always scored goals. If you don’t score away from home, it makes life difficult for you."
Messi has not featured for Barcelona this season owing to the calf injury he suffered during this summer's Copa America in Brazil.
Legit.ng earlier reported that Barcelona may be without their captain Lionel Messi when they battle Valencia this weekend as the Argentine's calf injury is taking longer than expected to heal.
The 32-year-old has not featured for the Catalans since the new season kicked off last month, having picked up calf injury while representing his country at the 2019 Copa America in Brazil.
Messi was meant to feature for his side in their La Liga clash against Real Betis at the Camp Nou but his injury relapsed - and it is unsure when he will be fit to play his first game this campaign.
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