Lionel Messi, has revealed he was not happy during the summer, saying the drama surrounding his attempted exit from Barcelona this summer affected his form at the start of the season.
The 33-year-old Argentina forward told Barcelona he wanted to leave after nearly two decades at the club, sending a document, via burofax [a form of recorded delivery provided by Spain’s postal service], expressing his desire to activate a release clause that would end his contract.
After days of back-and-forth over the issue, Messi agreed to stay, with Barcelona and La Liga insisting the forward’s €700m release clause had to be paid in full to trigger a move.
“What happened before the summer, what with how the season ended, the burofax and all the rest of it. I ended up carrying that over a bit into the start of this season.”
Barcelona were rocked by further off-field issues when Josep Maria Bartomeu resigned as club president in October, following heavy criticism of his handling of Messi’s attempt to leave.
The 33-year-old Argentina has now revealed he felt tired of being blamed for problems at Barcelona and is feeling positive again now, having recently equaled Pele’s record of 643 goals for a single club after scoring in Barcelona’s 2-2 draw with Valencia on Saturday, December 19.
“I’m feeling good at the moment,” Messi said. “I’m raring to really fight for everything that lies ahead.
“I’m excited. I know that the club is having a tough time of things, both on and off the field, and everything related to Barcelona is a bit tricky right now, but I’m feeling hungry.”