Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu believes Lionel Messi’s recent improved performances show he is happy at the club and ready to lead them to silverware.
The Argentine’s future has recently been in doubt after apparently falling out with boss Luis Enrique when he was left on the bench against Real Sociedad and he has since been heavily linked with a potential summer switch to Chelsea.
However, after being moved back out to the right wing in the last few weeks to help accommodate Luis Suarez, he has netted five times in his last three games including a hat-trick in Sunday’s win over Deportivo La Coruna.
Their recent upturn in from has seen Barcelona move to within a point of leaders Real Madrid in the standings and they are now 3.50 to win La Liga.
It is in the Copa del Rey where the Blaugrana’s next outing comes though, with Enrique’s men hosting Atletico Madrid in their first-leg tie on Thursday, a game they are 1.47 to win with the draw 4.25 and Los Colchoneros 6.08.
An inspired Messi helped Barca beat Atletico 3-1 earlier this month and, despite the speculation, Bartomeu feels his recent from shows he is totally committed to winning silverware with the club this season.
“We have to look at how [Messi] is now,” the president told Barcelona TV. “He is perfect in all senses. He has enormous motivation to win everything this year. I was with him, and he is happy.
“He is ambitious and wants to win. He is having a magnificent season. He is the leader and acts that way. We have Messi for many years, and I do not see any option to sell him, or any of his team-mates.”