‘If I don’t win, I’m sure Lionel Messi will not stay at Barcelona’ – Presidential candidate Joan Laporta issues warning ahead of election

Barcelona presidential candidate Joan Laporta warned that Lionel Messi will leave the club if he is not elected.

The Catalan club will choose their next president on Sunday from a list of three candidates.

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Messi is still top of the LaLiga scoring charts this season

Laporta is up against Toni Freixa and Victor Font and the issue of Messi is one of great importance.

The Argentinian maestro tried to force his way out of the club last summer after becoming disillusioned with the direction they were heading in while his relationship with then-president Josep Maria Bartomeu was at an all-time low.

Messi was forced to stay for at least another season but can leave in the summer on a free transfer.

Fans will hope whoever is elected can convince the 33-year-old icon to stay at Barcelona for the rest of his career.

Joan Laporta hopes to be Barcelona president again

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Joan Laporta hopes to be Barcelona president again

Laporta thinks that he is the only candidate who has a chance of getting Messi to stay.

“I have a great relationship with Leo and he will consider whatever proposal I make,” he said.

“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 [rival candidate, Toni] Freixa’s time on the board.

“He’s [Messi] not guided just by money. He wants a competitive team to win. I’m sure he’ll listen to my offer, just as I am [sure] that if someone else wins he will leave.”

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