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Sergio Aguero: 'I will not force Lionel Messi to stay at Barcelona'

Aguero: 'I will not force Messi to stay at Barcelona'
© Reuters
New Barcelona signing Sergio Aguero says that he will not influence Lionel Messi's decision on where his future lays, with his contract set to expire on June 30.

Barcelona's new signing Sergio Aguero has admitted that he will not put any pressure on Lionel Messi to stay with the Spanish giants, amid doubt over the talisman's future.

Aguero completed his move from Manchester City to Camp Nou at the end of May and was excited at the prospect of linking up with long-time friend Messi, whom he had played with before on international duty with Argentina.

Messi's contract with Barca is due to expire at the end of this month and he is yet to agree new terms with the club, amid interest from many top European clubs.

However, Aguero has said that he will not be influencing Messi's decision on his future: "It's up to him to sort it. I won't push Leo to stay. He is great.

"He will have to sort it with his agent. I'm very happy. It's a new challenge for me [on joining Barcelona]."

Joan Laporta and Ronald Koeman are desperate for Messi to stay after another high-scoring campaign, having netted 38 times in 47 appearances in all competitions for the Spanish giants.

Since making his first-team debut for Barcelona in 2004, Messi has scored an record 672 goals in 778 appearances for the club.

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Sergio Aguero pictured during his final Premier League game for Manchester City on May 23, 2021
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Monday's key events

· There are no Brits in the women's 100m hurdles final, but Puerto Rico's Jasmine Camacho-Quinn, fresh from breaking the Olympic record in the semis, will hope to pip world record holder Kendra Harrison to gold (3.50am)
· The women's 5000m final also has no Team GB representation, but two-time world champion Hellen Obiri of Kenya will be looking to add an Olympic gold to her list of honours (1.40pm)

· The women's skiff 49er FX (6.33am) and men's skiff 49er (7.33am) come to their conclusion, with Team GB involved in both medal races

· A place in the women's gold medal match is up for grabs, starting with an all-North American semi-final between United States and Canada (9am)
· Australia, who edged past Team GB's in a seven-goal quarter-final thriller, take on Sweden in the second semi-final (12pm)

· The track cycling schedule gets underway, with Team GB holding a particular interest in the team pursuit qualifying. Laura Kenny is part of the women's team (7.54am), while the men's team includes Ed Clancy (9.02am)

· The Gadirova twins Jessica and Jennifer will both take part in the women's floor final as they look to add to their team bronze (9.57am)

· Newly-crowned European champion Emily Campbell flies the flag for Great Britain in the women's +87kg, but faces stiff competition for medals from China's Li Wenwen and New Zealand's Laurel Hubbard (11.50am)

· The women's hockey quarter-finals begin, with Team GB last up against Spain (1pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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