Putting an end to uncertainty about his future, Lionel Messi announced Friday that he will stay with Barcelona for the upcoming season.
Messi made the announcement in a video interview published by Goal.com. He said he wanted "to seek a new direction" in his career but would not "get into a legal dispute with the club."
The decision ended an impasse over his future that started when he told Barcelona 10 days ago that he wanted to leave the club for free at the end of the season.
Barcelona wanted him to finish his contract that runs until June 2021. It claimed that the clause invoked by Messi to leave had expired on June 10 and said that he had to pay the buyout clause of 700 million euros ($837 million) if he wanted to depart now.
"The president (Josep Bartomeu) always said that at the end of the season I could decide if I wanted to go or if I wanted to stay and in the end he did not end up keeping his word," Messi said. "The president always told me 'when the season is over, you decide if you stay or leave.' But he never set a date."
Messi had told the club about his intention to leave by sending a burofax, a certified document similar to a telegram.
"The burofax was simply to make it official that he was not following the rules, not to get into a fight because I did not want to fight with the club," Messi said.
There had been no agreement when Messi's father and Bartomeu met on Wednesday to discuss the player's future, with Jorge Messi saying his son wanted to leave and Barcelona saying it would not facilitate his transfer.
"I'll continue at Barcelona and my attitude won't change, no matter how much I have wanted to go," Messi said. "I told the club and the president that I wanted to go. I've been telling him all year. I thought my time in Barcelona was over, sadly — I always wanted to finish my career here."
Messi had not made any public statements since the team's 8-2 loss to Bayern Munich in the quarterfinals of the Champions League on Aug. 14. He said the defeat, one of the worst in his career, was not what made him decide to leave.
"It was a very difficult year, I suffered a lot in training, in games and in the dressing room," Messi said. "I wanted a winning project and to win titles with the club to continue expanding the legend of Barcelona. The truth is that there has been no project or anything for a long time, they juggle and cover holes as things go by."
Still, Messi said it wasn't easy to decide to leave the club.
"When I communicated my wish to leave to my wife and children, it was a brutal drama," he said. "The whole family began crying, my children did not want to leave Barcelona, nor did they want to change schools."
The schedule of the much talked about election of Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) billed for October 3 has been announced on Thursday (Sept 3).
The chief election commissioner and returning officer of BFF Election' 2020 Mesbah Uddin announced the election schedule for the post of one President, one Sr Vice President, four Vice Presidents and 15 executive committee members.
The election of the 21-member BFF executive committee will be on October 3 from 3 pm to 6 pm at Sonargaon Hotel in the capital.
As per election schedule, distribution of nomination form on September 5 to 7 from 11 am to 5 pm, submission of nomination papers on September 8 from 11 am to 5 pm, submission of complain on Sept 9 from 11 am to 3 pm, scrutiny of nomination papers on Sept 11 from 3 pm, withdrawal of candidature from Sept 8 to 12 from 11 am to 5 pm, publication of final candidate list on Sept 13 at 3:pm and election on October 3.
The 21-member full panel was finalised for ensuing Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) election with six new faces including two in vice presidents posts and four in EC member on Wednesday.
The seating president of Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) Kazi Mohammad Salahuddin has finalized the panel on Wednesday night.
BFF election is scheduled to be held on October 3.
The chance of the legendary footballer Kazi Salahuddin to be re-elected as the BFF president for the 4th consecutive terms is strong as his main contender and owner of BPL team Saif SC Tarafder M Ruhul Amin on Wednesday step aside from the polls.
BFF senior vice president Abdus Salam Murshedy MP will contest in his present post from the panel.
Out of four present vice presidents, only Kazi Nabil Ahmed MP of Dhaka Abahani got a space in the Salahuddin panel while three other vice presidents --Badal Roy, Mohiuddin Mohi and Tabith Awal--were ignored.
The long serving BFF member Amirul Islam Babu was promoted to compete in the vice president post this time along with two new faces-- Bashundhara Kings President Imrul Hasan and Toma Group Chairman Ataur Rahman Manik.
However, Tabith Awal may compete in the post of vice president as an independent candidate like previous election.
In the executive committee members, Abdur Rahim will not compete this time for his old age while Fazlur Rahman Babul was dropped.
Renowned footballer Sheikh Mohammad Aslam, who was elected EC member last time from rival panel, naturally was not considered in the Salahuddin led-panel.
Four new faces, who were included in the Salahuddin led panel as EC members are- Asaduzzaman Mithu (Jashore), Kamrul Hasan Hilton (Sirajganj) , Syed Riazul Karim (Fakirerpool YMC) and Imtiaz Hamid Sabuj (Rahmatganj MFS) and rest are the members of the present committee.
The office bearers and EC members of the Salahuddin-led proposed panel are-
President: Kazi Mohammad Salahuddin, Sr Vice President: Abdus Salam Murshedy MP.
Vice presidents: Kazi Nabil Ahmed MP, Amirul Islam Babu, Imrul Hasan and Ataur Rahman Manik.
Members: Harun ur Rashid, Shawkat Ali Khan Jahangir, Satyajit Das Rupu, Elias Hosssin, Bijon Barua, Arif Hosssin Moon, Amit Khan Shuvro, Iqbal Hossain, Mohiuddin Ahmed Salim , Md Zakir Hossain, Mahfuza Akhter Kiron, Asaduzzaman Mithu, Kamrul Hasan Hilton, Syed Riazul Karim and Imtiaz Hamid Sabuj.
Lionel Messi’s father arrived in Spain early Wednesday and is expected to meet with Barcelona club officials to discuss his son’s future, reports AP.
Jorge Messi, who is also Lionel Messi’s agent, landed in Barcelona from Argentina. He is expected to meet with club president Josep Bartomeu and other team officials, but it's unclear when then meeting will take place.
“I don’t know anything,” Jorge Messi said briefly after being questioned at the airport.
Spanish television station Cuatro later reported that Jorge Messi said it would be “difficult” for his son to stay with Barcelona. He did not elaborate.
Lionel Messi last week told Barcelona he wanted to leave the club and invoked a contract clause that allowed him to depart for free at the end of the season. But Barcelona claimed the clause expired in June and said he must see out his current contract until June 2021, or leave by paying the buyout clause of 700 million euros ($837 million).
Barcelona has been saying it will not facilitate Messi's departure and will only negotiate a contract extension. The club has offered the Argentine a two-year extension that would keep him with Barcelona through the 2022-23 season.
In addition to meeting with Messi’s father, Barcelona said it also wanted to meet personally with the player to try to change his mind about leaving. The club said it has been doing everything to try to convince Messi to finish his career at the club where he started nearly 20 years ago.
Lionel Messi hasn’t met with club officials since announcing his decision to leave and hasn’t said anything publicly since Barcelona’s 8-2 loss to Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarterfinals on Aug. 14. The defeat that capped a difficult season for the club, its first without a title since 2007-08.
The 33-year-old Messi had been outspoken against club officials during the season and he hasn’t shown up at the club since the squad returned to training on Monday. He also skipped the required coronavirus tests the team underwent on Sunday.
Lionel Messi’s representatives claim he was allowed to invoke the clause to leave the club because this year the season was pushed back by the coronavirus pandemic.
Barcelona is scheduled to begin its season against Villarreal in the Spanish league at the end of the month.
Former national footballer Sheikh Mohammad Aslam has tested positive of Covid-19 along with a few members of his family, the former football-star confirmed to the media.
Before him, Badol Roy, another former footballer vice-president of Bangladesh Football Federation, had also been tested positive of Covid-19 but he recovered later.
“I have been tested positive of Covid-19 along with my wife, younger daughter, mother-in-law and caretaker of our home. All of us now are taking treatment at home,” Aslam told the media on Sunday.
He urged the people, who met him in the last few days, to undergo a Covid-19 test if they show any symptoms of the deadly virus which has left at least 4200 dead in Bangladesh.
“I would like to request you to undergo a Covid-19 test if you met me in the last few days and show any symptoms. And, please take precaution so that you cannot be exposed to the virus,” Aslam further added.
In his playing-days, Aslam represented Abahani and Mohammedan. He was one of the best footballers in the country during his time. He also represented Bangladesh national team for a few years.