Barcelona rule out Lionel Messi joining squad training

BARCELONA, SPAIN - MAY 16: Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona looks on during the La Liga Santander match between FC Barcelona and RC Celta at Camp Nou on May 16, 2021 in Barcelona, Spain. Sporting stadiums around Spain remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Lionel Messi won’t train with Barcelona while he remains off-contract.

According to Sport, Messi has agreed on a five-year deal to stay at Barcelona. But it’s not closed yet. The club are working on it with the club’s lawyers while Messi finished the final days of his holidays after winning the Copa America.

Both parties are working against the clock now because they want the contract signed as soon as possible. Until that happens, the player will not join up with Ronald Koeman’s squad for preseason.

The Barça players that took part in the Copa America final were given time off until August 2. That was Messi, Sergio Aguero and Emerson. The latter two are now back in Barcelona, with Messi the only one lacking.

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Despite speculation, he could return to training without signing his contract, Barça have ruled out that possibility. Legally that option is allowed, as long as the player is covered by insurance, but it won’t happen.

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