Report: Barcelona's meeting with Messi Sr. ends without resolution

2.9.2020 22:05

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu and Lionel Messi's father could not reach an agreement over the player's future during a slightly tense meeting Wednesday, sources told ESPN's Rodrigo Faez and Moises Llorens.

Messi's father, Jorge, flew to Barcelona demanding his son's release, citing a now-infamous clause that allows him to unilaterally terminate his contract at the end of each season.

The two sides will hold another meeting, according to Faez and Llorens, but have not determined a date.

During the two-hour meeting, Bartomeu reportedly insisted the clause is no longer valid, Messi remains under contract until June 2021, and teams interested in signing the 33-year-old will have to pay his €700-million release clause.

Messi Sr. told local reporters it will be "difficult" for his son to stay at Barcelona - where he's played all 16 years of his professional career - but denied talking to Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola.

When asked about a potential move to the Premier League side, Messi Sr. said, "There's nothing yet."

Messi skipped Barcelona's first preseason training session Monday due to the ongoing dispute. His legal team believes he's no longer under contract and has no responsibility to show up to training.

The club says the termination clause expired in June, but Messi's camp argues the Blaugrana should have extended the deadline because of the season delay caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

City are considered the favorites to land the six-time Ballon d'Or winner if he ends up leaving Barcelona. Messi has also been linked with Paris Saint-Germain, Inter Milan, and Juventus.

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