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Joan Laporta: 'Lionel Messi loves Barcelona'

Joan Laporta, who was confirmed as the new Barcelona president on Sunday, talks up the chances of Lionel Messi remaining at Camp Nou.

Newly-elected president Joan Laporta has acknowledged that he is keen for Lionel Messi to remain at Barcelona.

Eleven years after his previous stint at Camp Nou, Laporta's return was confirmed on Sunday as he received 58.3% of votes, seeing off Victor Font and Toni Freixa.

Messi's future at Barcelona is a constant topic of debate now that less than three months remain on the Argentine's contract.

Laporta has pledged to do everything possible to retain the services of the forward, something that he reiterated late on Sunday.

Speaking after his presidential victory, Laporta said: "Today marks 20 years since a boy named Leo Messi debuted with Barcelona's Infantil B [U12-13] team," "Seeing the best player in the world come to vote with his son is an example of what we've said.

"Leo loves Barcelona. That's the reflection of it. The best player in the world loves Barcelona. Hopefully that will help him to stay at Barcelona. That's what we want."

Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City remain interested in signing Messi on a free transfer.

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Joan Laporta pictured before the Barcelona presidential election on March 7, 2021
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