I see myself playing football until the contract end, says Lionel Messi on leaving Barca. Messi was named the captain of Catalan club this season.
Barcelona ace Lionel Messi is nearing the twilight of his career, yet, aged 31 he is the club’s talismanic figure and displays no signs of slowing down. The Argentinian forward was on target twice and also assisted as many during Barcelona’s 8-2 triumph over SD Huesca over the weekend.
There is now an air of inevitability about a good display when either Ronaldo or Messi play for the national teams or clubs, but it is going to be very soon that we see the end of two of the greatest players to grace the football pitch. While Cristiano Ronaldo is 33, Messi is 31 but the former seems to be fitter to carry on for longer than his Argentine rival.
As is expected in the next few years, Messi has hinted at wanting to end his career with Barcelona and dropped a bombshell by saying that it could be within three years’ time when his contract when his lengthy association with Barcelona ends in June 2021. “I see myself playing football until I finish my contract,” he said. “Then we’ll talk to the club if I have to go on or not. I’m not worried.”
Leo also vowed to deliver a Champions League title in the coming years, which is something that Barcelona have not achieved in three years. That period would have hurt the club more as it had to watch arch rivals Real Madrid win the trophy for three years running while they were knocked out in three successive quarter final rounds.
Messi added; “It’s time [to win it again]. We have been knocked out in the quarter-finals in the last three seasons. Last season’s result in Rome hurt especially, but we have a spectacular squad and we can fight for it [this season].”
Barcelona have one of the ‘groups of death’ of this year’s UEFA Champions League after they have been paired with the likes of Tottenham Hotspur, PSV Eindhoven and Inter Milan. Nevertheless, they are the favourites to win Europe’s elite competition in my opinion.