- Lionel Messi will not change his mind about leaving Barcelona this summer, ex-Madrid striker Jorge Valdano claims
- Valdano believes the Catalan club should accept Messi's decision and swallow the bitter pill
- Messi wants a new challenge elsewhere after almost 20 years at the Camp Nou
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Lionel Messi's heart is no longer with Barcelona and the club should come to terms with reality with the Argentine, according ex-Real Madrid striker Jorge Valdano.
The 33-year-old submitted his transfer request which has shocked the world and to back up his claims he did not appear for Barca's first pre-season training with his teammates.
Messi wants to leave as a free agent but La Blaugrana on the other hand wants the club captain to activate his €700million release clause.
But former Real Madrid forward head coach and director general Valdano is confident Messi has his mind made up on his decision.
"Either he goes to another club or to his home, but he has already left Barcelona. I am totally convinced. I have no doubt," he said on Onda Cero show El Transistor.
"The sooner Barcelona realise they are going to lose the best player in their history, the sooner they can focus on rebuilding."
Some people believe could make a U-turn on his decision just like he did when he announced his retirement with Argentina when they lost out to Chile in the Copa American final in 2016.
But the 1986 World Cup winner explains that the club and country are two different situations, stressing that Messi did not sign a contract to play for the Albiceleste.
"They are completely different situations because there is no contract or anything similar when Leo left the Albiceleste and returned," Valdano continued.
"There are no personal problems. I don't know how far this period is going to go, which is toxic for the club, player and La Liga.
"[Barca president Josep Maria] Bartomeu must think that when Messi leaves, he should go too… but prolonging this seems to me to be harmful to Barca."
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had earlier reported that Lionel Messi will not change his mind about leaving Barcelona this summer after handing a transfer request, according to presidential candidate Toni Freixa.
There have been controversies surrounding Messi's decision after his annoucement but the Freixa believes it will do little or nothing to stop the Argentine.
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