- Lionel Messi's future at Barcelona remains uncertain despite having about three months left on his deal
- The 33-year-old has been linked with a move to Manchester City and PSG ahead of the summer window
- Barcelona presidential candidate Laporta believes he is the only one who can convince the Argentine to stay
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Former Barcelona president Joan Laporta has insisted that he is the only person who can persuade Lionel Messi to extend his reign at the club.
The 33-year-old is out of contract with the Catalans at the end of this season and has been linked with a move away from Camp Nou.
However, Laporta, who is also contesting to become the club's president again believes the Argentine star will exit their club unless he is elected as Josep Bartomeu's successor.
The Blaugrana are confused about the approach they must employ to keep the six-time Ballon d'Or winner beyond this summer.
Manchester City and Paris Saint Germain are the two top clubs serious about luring Messi away from the Nou Camp when he becomes a free agent in June.
The 58-year-old Spanish politician has however promised to keep Messi at the club while on the campaign trail and has now issued a simple warning to members before they cast their vote according to Daily Mail.
"I have a great relationship with Leo [Messi] and he will consider whatever proposal I make. If I don't win, I am sure that Leo will not stay at Barcelona.
"Messi will weigh up the offer we make him. I'm convinced that if the other candidates win, Messi will not remain at Barcelona. He wasn't happy during Freixa's time on the board."
Messi was very close to dumping his boyhood club in August 2020 after their 8-2 humiliation to Bayern Munich in the Champions League but his heavy release clause stopped the process.
Sources reveal that the winger's current deal is worth a staggering £492 million.
Legit.ng earlier reported that ahead of their Copa del Rey clash with Barcelona, Sevilla star Papu Gomez has warned his teammates about Lionel Messi, saying the legend is capable of anything.
The Argentine star knows a lot about his countryman and is already warning his teammates as they prepare for Wednesday’s second leg Copa del Rey semi-final clash.
Messi found the back of the net against the same team in the La Liga over the weekend and according to Gomez, Sevilla have to be careful of the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.
Oluwatomiwa is a sports editor with Legit.ng. He has over eight years of field and office experience in the media industry. He graduated from the Nigerian Institute of Journalism in 2014 with HND in Mass Communication. Connect with him on Twitter @TomiwaBabalola.