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Barcelona: Real reason for Messi’s u-turn

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Lionel Messi said on Friday he will stay at Barcelona, insisting he could never go to court against “the club of his life”.But he launched a stinging attack on Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu, accusing him of going back on an agreement to let him leave for free at the end of last season.

“The president always said that at the end of the season I could decide if I wanted to go or if I wanted to stay and in the end he didn’t end up keeping his word,” Messi said in an interview with Goal, released on Friday.

“I thought and we were sure that I was free. The president always said that at the end of the season I could decide if I stayed or not and now they hold on to the fact that I did not say it before June 10 when it turns out that on June 10 we were competing for the league in the middle of this shitty virus and this disease that altered all the dates.”

Messi, 33, added: “And this is the reason why I am going to continue in the club… because the president told me that the only way to leave was to pay the 700-million-euro release clause.

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“This is impossible, and then the other way was to go to trial. I would never go to court against Barca because it is the club that I love, that gave me everything since I arrived, it is the club of my life, I have made my life here.”

Messi had said he wanted to leave the club he joined as a boy after Barcelona’s humiliating 8-2 defeat to Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarter-finals in August.

His lawyers sent a burofax stating his intention to go for free on August 25 but Messi says he had made his feelings clear to Bartomeu many times before.

“I told the club, especially the president, that I wanted to go,” said Messi. “I’ve been telling him all year. I believed it was time to step aside.

‘Everything became difficult’

“I believed that the club needed more young people, new people and I thought my time in Barcelona was over, feeling very sorry because I always said that I wanted to finish my career here.

“It was a very difficult year, I suffered a lot in training, in games and in the dressing room. Everything became very difficult for me and there came a time when I considered looking for new goals, new horizons.

“It wasn’t because of the Champions League result against Bayern, I had been thinking about it for a long time. I told the president and the president always said that at the end of the season I could decide if I wanted to go or if I wanted to stay and in the end he did not end up keeping his word.”

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Despite his unhappiness, Messi insists he will give his all for Barcelona next season under their new coach Ronald Koeman, with his current contract due to expire in June next year.

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Oyo SWAN Mourns Ex-3SC Boss

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The Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, Oyo State Chapter on Monday  commiserated with the management of Shooting Stars Sports Club, Ibadan over the death of its former Chairman, Alhaji Gbolagade Busari who passed on at the age of 61.

Busari, popularly known as Busso during his life time, died on Monday at the University College Hospital Ibadan where he had been receiving treatment following a brief illness.

In a condolence message signed the Association’s Chairman, Niyi Alebiosu and Secretary, Adewale Tijani, Oyo SWAN described the death of Busso as a monumental loss to not only 3SC but also to sports fraternity, Journalism profession and the Political Class.

“The death of Busso is shocking. We will miss him because of his statemanship”, Oyo SWAN lamented .

The statement also recalled that late Busari was a bridge builder who strived to ensure that peace reign among sports writers in the state.

“We can’t forget the role Late Busso played in resolving the dispute among sports writers in Oyo State. He also toiled to return 3SC’s to its former prestigious place”, Oyo SWAN noted.

The Association condoled with the family of the late Politician, and prayed that God give them the fortitude to bear the loss.

Late Busari was the Chairman of 3SC during the tenure of late Governor Abiola Ajimobi.

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Before delving into politics, late Busari was a sports journalist with the defunct Sketch Newspaper.

He rose to the position of Chief Editor before relocating to the U.S, from where he returned to join politics and subsequently became 3SC Chairman.

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PHOTOS: Ex 3SC Chairman, Busari buried in Ibadan

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The remains of the immediate past Executive Chairman of the Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) of Ibadan, Alhaji Gbolagade Busari have been committed to mother earth.

The former  sports journalist’s body was interred on Monday evening at Orogun area in Ibadan, the Oyo State Capital.

The interrement was witnessed by friends and associates of the late 3SC boss.

The Oluyole Warriors were well represented at the event by their officials and players.

Team Manager of the club, Dineji Lawal, led the officials which included Chief coach, Edith Agoye, assistant coach, Yinka Popoola, and Team Coordinator Adu Akintominiyi.

3SC skipper, Waheed Omololu, Fatai Gbadamosi, Olawale Mutiu, Awujoola Sadiq and Oripelaye Taiwo, represented the players.

The erstwhile Shooting Stars chairman, died in the early hours of Monday morning at the University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan.

 

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Argentine football ‘lord’, Maradona is dead

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Argentine football legend, Diego Maradona has died of cardiac arrest at the age of 60.

Maradona’s spokesman confirmed the tragic story on Wednesday.

It will be recalled that the Gimnasia coach had been hospitalised at the start of November, days after celebrating the landmark birthday, after complaining of low spirits and fatigue. 

Tests at the La Plata clinic revealed a blood clot on the brain, which doctors later revealed was operated on successfully. 

Maradona was subsequently released from hospital as an outpatient to continue his convalescence, which he carried out in his dwelling in a private neighbourhood near Tigre, northern Buenos Aires. 

Unfortunately, on Wednesday morning he suffered cardiac arrest, and paramedics at the scene failed to revive him. 

Details later…

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