Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman has insisted he’s not worried about a new report that French champions Paris Saint-Germain have made captain Lionel Messi an “unbeatable” contract offer.
The Dutchman was asked about the speculation surrounding the Argentine’s future on Wednesday at a pre-match conference and insisted he is focusing on trying to win games, as reported by Diario Sport.
“It doesn’t interest me to be honest because I don’t know if it’s true,” he said. “I hope Leo stays with us and I have said it many times. For me, he has to end his career here. But it’s his decision. “I am just worried about winning tomorrow; let’s see what happens at the end of the season.”
Koeman’s comments come in the wake of a fresh report from reputable journalist Marcelo Bechler for TNT Sports Brasil. The report states PSG has made a financial offer other clubs will be unable to match and want to hand Messi a contract for two years with the option of one more.
Follow the Heavy on Barcelona Facebook page for the latest breaking news, rumors and content!
Koeman Focused On Title Race
Messi has said he will not make a decision on is future until the end of the season, and it promises to be a thrilling climax to the 2020-21 La Liga campaign. Barca remains in the hunt to be crowned champions and will go top with victory over Granada on Thursday.
Koeman also spoke about his team’s title hopes and the huge turnaround in form which put has the Catalan giants in a position to overhaul leaders Atletico Madrid at the top of the table, as reported by Marca.
“It is important to win because we are in a moment where we know we can be leaders and it can be a reward, but first we have to win,” he said. “In the last 17 games, almost half of the season, we have 15 wins. That’s impressive. And it had to be like this, because otherwise we wouldn’t be fighting for the title.”
Barcelona and Atletico Madrid meet again in La Liga on May 8 at the Camp Nou.
Praise For Griezmann
The Barcelona boss also took time out to praise Messi’s fellow attacker Antoine Griezmann ahead of Thursday’s match. The Frenchman scored both Barcelona goals in a 2-1 win over Villarreal last time out to take his tally to the season to 18.
Griezmann has received plenty of criticism during his time at Barcelona, but Koeman says the World Cup winner remains an important player for the Catalan giants, as reported by Diario Sport.
“For me, Antoine is a very important player. During the summer we spoke with him. Of course our forwards have been criticized for not being clinical enough, including Antoine, but he’s a player I like, someone who always helps the team, works hard and looks out for the group,” he explained. “He has also had some bad luck this season but it’s true he has more confidence now. He showed that with his first goal against Villarreal, don’t score that if you’re short of confidence, and I hope he continues that way.”
Both Messi and Griezmann are expected to start Thursday’s match once again, although if either picks up a yellow card they will receive an automatic one-match ban and will miss Sunday’s visit to Valencia in La Liga.
READ NEXT: Barcelona Has ‘Miracle Plan’ To Reunite Messi and Neymar: Report