- Lionel Messi wanted to force through a move to Manchester City last summer
- He was unhappy after losing the Copa America final and sentenced for tax fraud
- Barca chief Josep Maria Bartomeu and Jordi Mestre could not convince him to stay
- The superstar was eventually convinced to stay after speaking with Luis Suarez
Lionel Messi was ready to quit Barcelona last summer to join Pep Guardiola at Manchester City but was convinced to stay at the Camp Nou by good friend Luis Suarez.
According to Mundo Deportivo Messi was ready to come out and publicly declare his intentions to move away from the Catalan club.
Barca were not willing to sell the player saying any club interested in his services will have to pay his £219m release clause.
He even met with club president Josep Maria Bartomeu and vice-president Jordi Mestre who had flown to Miami to meet with Messi’s father but could not turn his head after a three hour discussion.
However a heart-to-heart talk with striking teammate Luis Suarez convinced him to stay after which he resumed training where La Pulga met with Mestre and Bartomeu again and convinced him to stay.
Messi could yet leave this summer as his contract expires next summer and the 29-year-old is yet to agree a new extension.
City’s chief executive Ferran Soriano has admitted Messi "will stay at Barcelona".
Meanwhile, you can see NAIJ.com's video of the Super Eagles training ahead of the World Cup qualifiers;