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‘Let’s Leave Messi In Peace’

Barcelona coach Xavi Hernandez called for Lionel Messi to be left in peace as the Paris Saint-Germain forward continues to be linked with a return to Camp Nou.

Messi, 35, is out of contract with PSG at the end of the season and Barca vice president Eduard Romeu said last week it would be viable to bring him back to the club on a financial level.

Romeu’s remarks came after president Joan Laporta opened the door to a sensational reunion with Messi in an interview with ESPN in the summer.

“With Leo, let’s see, but it’s not the moment to talk about it right now,” Xavi said in a news conference ahead of Barca’s Champions League game against Internazionale on Tuesday.

“You know the love I have for him. He is a friend and I will always wish him the best. Barca is his home, but we’re not doing him any favours speaking about [his future], either.

“Let’s leave him in peace to enjoy his time in Paris and wish him all the best.”

Talk of Messi’s return comes as Barca finally appear to have turned the page on the Argentina forward, with Robert Lewandowski’s goal in the weekend’s win over Mallorca taking them to the top of LaLiga for the first time in over two years.

However, while they remain unbeaten domestically, Barca still have work to do to avoid being knocked out of the Champions League group stage for the second season running.

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