Laporta says Barcelona talks with Messi 'progressing'

The Argentine superstar, who is currently at the Copa America, became a free agent on Thursday when his last contract with Barcelona expired.

Messi joined Barcelona as a 13-year-old but tried to leave last August, citing a clause in his contract and a club that had had no project or anything for a long time   -  AP

Barcelona's contract negotiations with Lionel Messi "are progressing as expected", club president Joan Laporta told Spanish public television on Friday.

"We want him to stay, Leo wants to stay and we are looking for the best formula," said Laporta.

"We would like it to be concluded as quickly as possible but we know it will take time."

The Argentine superstar, who is currently at the Copa America, became a free agent on Thursday when his last contract with Barcelona expired.

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Messi, 34, joined Barcelona as a 13-year-old but tried to leave last August, citing a clause in his contract and a club that had had "no project or anything for a long time".

He has inevitably been linked with a series of possible moves, from Manchester City and Paris St-Germain to David Beckham's Inter Miami.

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