7 Jan 2015

Barcelona manager Luis Enrique quiet on Lionel Messi rumours

Barcelona manager Luis Enrique has declined to comment on reports of a fall-out with Lionel Messi, describing him as "the best player in the world".

Reports in Spain suggest that La Liga's all-time record goalscorer, 27, is unhappy playing under Enrique.
But Enrique said: "I don't think I should be asked to confirm any, or deny any, of these rumours. It would stir up more problems than it would solve."
Messi started on the bench as Barcelona lost to Real Sociedad at the weekend.

The defeat meant they remained second in the table, a point behind fierce rivals Real Madrid.

In November, Enrique insisted Messi was "delighted" to be at Barca after reports linked the Argentine with a move away from the Nou Camp.

Talk of a transfer has resurfaced in recent days, with rumours Messi could be interested in a move to English Premier League side Chelsea.

Catalan radio has claimed that the London club has contacted Messi's father and agent Jorge.
Asked if Messi was still happy with life at Barcelona, Enrique said: "I don't want to comment. We know things change and a month is a long time."

The former Barca player added: "I have the same relationship with all my players that I had at the start of the season. That has not changed."
Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu is due to speak to the media later on Wednesday, but Enrique says he is under no pressure.
"I haven't received an ultimatum from the president," said Enrique. "I've never had any such threat in my entire career."
Barca face Elche in the Copa del Rey on Thursday evening.

Credit: BBC Sport

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