‘With Messi we will win a title this season’: Josep Bartomeu reveals how he forced the Argentinian to stay for the ‘good of the club’ and ‘knew he would be criticized for it’ … while the pressure for the president under fire to resign
- Barça president Josep Bartomeu claims club will ‘win a title this season’
- Messi wanted to leave Barcelona to reunite with Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola
- Bartomeu admitted to having blocked the transfer to avoid reinforcing a direct rival
- The under attack president said the club wants the striker to stop at Barcelona
Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu claims the club will ‘win a title this season’ after preventing Lionel Messi from leaving the LaLiga squad.
Messi, a six-time Ballon d’Or winner, was at war with the club when he attempted to advance to the Premier League to reunite with Pep Guardiola in Manchester City.
However, Messi tied his future to the Nou Camp to avoid taking Barcelona to court after Bartomeu made it clear that he had no legal ground to stand due to the € 700 million (£ 630 million) release clause in his contract .
Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu claims club will ‘win a title this season’
Bartomeu came under fire for the way he handled the situation, with hundreds of fans flocking to the Nou Camp demanding that the president be impeached.
Thinking about his decision to prevent Messi from leaving, Bartomeu said Target: ‘Our priority was to keep Messi as part of our new project, so I decided not to start a discussion.
“I was accused of forcing his departure to balance our books. Well no, we put the club’s interests first and didn’t want to bolster a direct rival. We made that decision knowing we would be criticized for it. ‘
Bartomeu says Lionel Messi will be the key to their success after blocking his summer transfer
Messi wanted to leave Barcelona to reunite with Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola
He added: ‘I understand everyone’s views, empathy is important. In Leo’s case, it’s okay to get angry because it’s not okay to accept defeat and we’ve all gotten angry.
But there was a deadline for him to announce whether he would go unilaterally or not. He didn’t and here it is. We all want him to retire from Barca. ‘
‘The project is very interesting with young people and veterans, such as Messi. And I think we will win a title with him this season. ‘
Crunch talks over the president’s position took place on Monday as pressure on the chief under the fire to step down is mounting.
Bartomeu admitted, however, that he refused to step down, stating that it would not be an ‘appropriate’ time to leave his post.
Fans were unhappy with Bartomeu’s treatment of Messi and gathered at the Nou Camp over the summer
“There is no reason for me to resign,” he said in a statement press conference after the meeting. “It is not an appropriate time to hand in my resignation. No one will be able to make the decisions if I decide to resign.
‘The idea of resigning never occurred to me. Never.’
Club members will vote on November 1 whether the president should be removed from office.
As it stands, 16,500 supporters have signed a motion to remove Bartomeu from his position.
The vote will take place among 154,000 club members, with more than 66.6 percent needed to oust Bartomeu.