Lionel Messi has put to bed any murmurs of a possible exit from Catalan giants FC Barcelona, as the club the announced that the Argentine will sign a new deal upon his return to pre-season training which will keep him at the Nou Camp until 2021
Happy to keep the man who has led us to extraordinary success
Messi has spent his whole career in Spain having moved there at the age of 13 and has firmly established himself as one of the greatest players to grace the hallowed turf, with the 30-year-old winning five Ballon d'Or's, 30 major trophies and becoming Barca's and La Liga's all-time top scorer with 507 and 349 respectively.
The forward only had a year left on his current contract with the club with rumours beginning to circulate that he could even make a move to the Premier League with Manchester City been the likely destination, but he will return to pre-season training with Barca under the helm of new manager Ernesto Valverde.
"'The club is very happy with both the renewal and the commitment of Messi," A statement read. "The best player in history."
"Who has played his full professional career at Barca and has led the team to an era of extraordinary success," It continued. "The likes of which has never been seen in world football."
Making his way back to the Nou Camp
It is another regeneration process at Barcelona during the off-season with Valverde looking to build upon the Luis Enrique era and shape the side in his own image, the main rumours in terms of transfers have been in the midfield with Marco Verratti and Paulinho heavily linked but their first piece of business was to bring back an old face.
Gerard Deulofeu was one of the brightest prospects to come out of the famous La Masia academy but it never worked out for the Spaniard as he was loaned out to Everton where he signed a permanent deal in 2015, the 23-year-old has since fell down the pecking order at Gooidson Park which saw him loaned out to AC Milan for the second half of last season.
Barca have opted to exercise the buy-back clause that they had in their initial sale of Deulofeu, with the club announcing that he signed a two-year deal with his former club.
"FC Barcelona have activated the buy-back clause for Gerard Deulofeu," the club statement read. "In the following days, the terms will be agreed with both Everton and the player."