Laporta praises Argentina win and provides update on Messi contract

Martin Macdonald
Lionel Messi scores for Argentina against Bolivia at the Copa America

Barcelona president Joan Laporta has praised Lionel Messi and Argentina for winning the Copa America, while providing a slight update on the player's contract situation.

Messi is recognised as one of the greatest player in history, with only a major international tournament previously missing from his trophy collection.

Now, though, he is a Copa America champion after Argentina defeated Brazil in the final of the continental competition on Sunday, with Angel Di Maria scoring the winning goal in a 1-0 win for the Albiceleste.

The tournament would have presented a welcome distraction for Messi from his situation at club level as he is officially, at the moment, a free agent.

The 34-year-old's contract expired on 30 June and as of yet Barcelona have still to put together a suitable financial package to bring him back, due to their dire financial situation.

When asked about Messi, Laporta said talks are progressing before lavishing praise on Argentina.

"[Messi's renewal] is progressing adequately," he said.

"All the Catalans, Barcelona, Catalunya and the entire football world are happy because Leo won the Copa America. It is very exciting to see the best player in football history get excited about winning a title like this and he made all of us cry with joy.

"He is very happy, we are all happy. I am happy for Leo who has managed [to win the Copa América], together with his team-mates, and that Argentina are once again in the elite.

"I am happy for Messi's family, for Argentina, for Barcelona who are recognised, admired and loved for having this bond with Leo."

What has Messi said about his future?

Throughout the Copa America Messi kept quiet about his future at Barcelona, and it seems like he isn't totally certain of his plans even now.

When asked following Argentina's win about the Blaugrana, he said he wasn't focusing on it at the moment.

"I am disconnected from everything, I am not looking at anything," he said in a voice note to ESPN reporter Pollo Vignolo.

“Enjoying this moment, the people, falling down little by little about everything this means and preparing to go on vacation with my family, which is what it is now.

“The truth is that happy, impossible to explain the happiness that I, my family and my friends feel. A beautiful madness all this.”