Pedri hoping to be Lionel Messi team-mate at Barcelona ‘for many years’

The teenager is eager to learn from the Argentinian superstar for as long as possible

Barcelona midfielder Pedri will be hoping Lionel Messi will be his teammate for “many years” amid frenzied speculation about the Argentine’s future at Camp Nou.

Messi is out of contract at the end of the season and it remains to be seen whether he will accept a new deal after trying to leave the club last summer.

However, the election of Joan Laporta as Barcelona’s new president gave new impetus to the club’s efforts to hang on to the striker, with Pedri among a handful of emerging Barca youngsters keen to play alongside the six. once winner of the Ballon d’Or for as long as possible.

What did Pedri say?

Pedri admits he couldn’t believe his eyes when he joined Messi for his first Barca training session last year.

The summer signature of Las Palmas told The sports club: “The first day I saw Messi, I thought it was a lie.

“When I was next to Messi I was very shocked to see him. It was like being on TV or in a video game, I almost couldn’t believe it.

“Playing with Messi is easy because when you give it to him you know things are going to happen. And that’s what I’m trying to do, give them the best positions so that it is the most beneficial for the team. “

On Messi’s future, Pedri added: “I hope I can be close to him for several years. It would be great if I could continue to love playing with Messi and learning a lot from his side.

Will Messi stay at Barcelona?

Joan Laporta asked Messi directly to stay at Camp Nou during his inauguration earlier this week, underlining his clear priority in the first months of his presidency.

Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are seen as pioneers in signing Messi should he decide to leave, mainly because they are the only ones who can reasonably pay his salary.

However, recent speculation suggests Messi may well stay at the club after all.

Their return to form will likely be a key factor in his thinking, with boss Ronald Koeman building a new squad around Messi that includes a number of talented youngsters such as Pedri, Riqui Puig, Ansu Fati and Ilaix Moriba.

The heralded prospect of Manchester City striker and Messi’s close friend Sergio Aguero arriving this summer could also help persuade the 33-year-old to stay with the club he has represented since age 13.

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