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Barca admit Messi could leave for City, PSG


MESSI-TAXBARCELONA, March 9- Barcelona’s new international sporting director Ariedo Braida admits Lionel Messi may one day depart the club for the likes of Manchester City or Paris Saint-Germain.

Much has been made about the Argentina international’s future in recent times, with reports suggesting he is ready to end his 11-year stay at the Nou Camp in order to secure an adventure elsewhere in Europe.

English Premier League champions City have been strongly tipped with a move for the four-time Ballon d’Or winner, while another wealthy club in PSG are also thought to be amongst those ready to splash the reported £205 million it would take to activate the release clause in his contract.

And, while he is doubtful any move would materialise this season, Braida admits Messi, who scored his 32nd career hat-trick during Sunday’s 6-1 thrashing of Rayo Vallecano, may choose not to stay at Barca for his entire professional career.

He told Spanish TV channel Esport3: “I believe it’s very difficult that Messi will leave Barca but at times in football strange things happen.

“Now with these clubs that have so much money like (Manchester) City, certain amounts don’t seem to have a value.

“In football things happen that appear impossible but I hope he will remain.

“Sometimes strange things happen. He is a phenomenon, an extra-terrestrial comparable to Maradona and Pele.”