Lionel Messi wanted to quit Barcelona in 2013 after he was found guilty of tax evasion.
Back in 2013, Lionel Messi was at the centre of a tax fraud investigation that shook Spanish football.
Since then several players and managers have been found guilty of such a crime.
But Messi feels because of his public status, he was targeted and made an example of.
This treatment almost led th Argentine superstar and Barcelona hero to walk away from the Camp Nou.
Lionel Messi has said that in 2013 he wanted to leave Barcelona but now plans to end his career at the Nou Camp.
Speaking to RAC1, Messi talks openly about his treatment and future.
“I felt very badly treated”
“Sincerely, at that time, I thought about leaving.”
“Not because of Barcelona but because I wanted to leave Spain, I didn’t want to stay here any longer.”
While he says he was open to offers, nobody ever tried to sign him. The reason being they knew he did not really want to leave.
“I had my doors open to many clubs but I never got an official offer because everyone knew I really wanted to stay.”
“This situation went way beyond my feelings for Barca.”
Messi has risen through the ranks of Barcelona. He arrived at La Masia at the age of 13.
“My idea is to stay for many years.”
“I’ve always thought this way and nothing has changed.”
“It’s clear that my idea is to finish my career at Barca.”
“Especially because of what I feel for the club and for my family. We are very happy in Barcelona.”
There has been the talk of Messi’s influence on the Barca board.
But Messi denies it and claims to have a good but distant relationship with the clubs president.
“The last time I talked to Bartomeu [Barcelona’s president] was in Liverpool, but we’ve not met since.”
“I have no problem with him.”
“Sometimes, he asks for feedback from the dressing room on the subject of signings, like with Neymar or Griezmann.”
“But it isn’t true that I decide who we are to sign or which coach is here.”