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Messi Bags Brace in Return, Wants Barca Stay

  • ESPN FC, Thursday, January 9, 2014 1:19 PM
He’s back! Lionel Messi bagged a brace in 26 minutes of action on Wednesday as Barcelona thumped Getafe, 4-0, at the Camp Nou. Messi, who had been sidelined by a hamstring injury since mid-November, added gloss to a comprehensive performance from the home team, scoring two late goals after coming on as a substitute in the 64th minute for Andres Iniesta.

During his time away from the club recuperating in Argentina, Messi became embroiled in a war of words with Barca vice president Javier Faus over his salary, leading to speculation that the Argentine was seeking a move away from the Catalan giant. However, following his fairytale comeback against Getafe, the four-time Ballon d’Or winner told AS that he has no intention of leaving the club:

“My idea is to stay here and play my whole career at Barcelona,” he said. “I was really looking forward to coming back. I was a long time off the pitch.” Messi noted that it is still too early to say whether he will be able to start Saturday’s La Liga clash at joint-leader Atletico Madrid. “I will speak with [coach Gerardo] Martino and the doctor,” he said. “After all the injuries, I want to play. If I can be there, I will be. I always think about the club. I have the excitement of always. Now are coming five or six hard months.”

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