Messi hints at Barca stay, backs Pep

Barcelona star Lionel Messi will stay at the club ‘for as long as they want me’ and has also come to the defence of former boss Pep Guardiola.

The Argentine’s current deal at Camp Nou expires in June 2018 and Marca has reported that he is non-committal over his future at the club – preferring to wait until his deal expires before accessing his options.

Diario Sport meanwhile report that there has been no formal offer as yet from the club, but they report all parties are confident of a deal being struck swiftly.

"I have always said that Barcelona have given me everything and I am here for as long as they want me to be," Messi is quoted as saying by Coach Magazine.

"What drives me? To win trophies for my club and country. That is why I never look back at my success. I can do that when I am retired. For now, it is about looking forward to more success.”

When asked of a possible reunion with former Barca coach Pep Guardiola in England, he distanced himself from any such move but did predict his manager would prove his critics wrong.

"It is a very competitive league, last season showed that, so it makes it very difficult to predict," Messi continued.

"Of course Pep is a very successful coach. He will be adjusting to the league, but I am sure that he will be successful."

Tags Lionel Messi Manchester City Pep Guardiola