- Frenkie de Jong has claimed that Lionel Messi is still in the team's group
- The Barcelona captain has asked to leave the club and did not turn up for training
- The 23-year-old played 42 times for La Blaugrana in his debut season at the Camp Nou
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Frenkie de Jong has revealed that Lionel Messi is still in Barcelona players' WhatsApp group despite demanding for his exit.
The club captain refused to train with his teammates and has been linked with a move Paris Saint-Germain and most prominently Manchester City.
But De Jong has insisted that with the current situation between Messi and Barca, he still remains part of the team.
"I hope that Messi is still there when I get back, but that is not something that is up to me. He's still in the group chat," the midfielder told Fox Sports.
"I'm not anyone to talk about it with him, I'm sure he has many people around him doing that these days."
De Jong joined Barcelona last summer, for £65 million and made 42 appearances in all competitions last season.
The Dutch international will be under the tutelage of his former national team boss Ronald Koeman who became a new manager at Camp Nou.
De Jong has earned 15 senior caps since breaking into the senior national team at the age of 21 and has scored one goal for his country.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had earlier reported that Luis Suarez is close to joining Juventus as reports claim the Uruguayan striker has agreed personal terms with Serie A side.
Other top European clubs including Ajax and Paris Saint-Germain have shown their interest in Suarez who has a year left in his deal at Barcelona.
But according to Italian news outlet La Gazzetta dello Sport cited by Marca, the former Liverpool striker has agreed on a deal with the Bianconeri.
Legit.ng had also reported that Messi's departure from Barcelona is not being supported by club outcasts Luis Suarez and Arturo Vidal.
The 33-year-old has refused to turn up for training after expressing his desire to leave the Camp Nou at the end of the season.
According to Sky Sports, some of Messi's teammates have remained silent on the matter with the exception of Suarez and Vidal.
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