Barcelona President, Joan Laporta has insisted he took the best decision by putting the interest of the club over that of Lionel Messi by not renewing the contract of the Argentine player.
Messi left the Catalan side last summer in a free transfer because they could not afford to sign him to a new contract.
Laporta, who recently expressed his desire to see the six-time Ballon d’Or winner return, says he put the interests of the club ahead of Messi’s when making the decision not to renew his contract, but he is determined to lure the icon back to La Liga.
“I did what I had to do in order to put the institution above the best player in our history,” Laporta told CBS Sports.
“I have known Messi since he was a kid and I love Leo. I feel in moral debt to Messi. He’s the best player in our history and I will do my best in order to ensure he can have the best ending of his career with a Barca shirt on.
“I would like to bring him back. It will not be easy but I think with the correct strategy we could do it. I think Messi has been the most important player in our history.
“During a long period of success he was the leader. He was the one who excited our supporters. We will do our best to have Messi ending his career at Barcelona and being applauded by everyone.”
He added: “The end of Leo at Barcelona was not the best. It was a difficult time. We had to take a decision and put the club above the best player in our history.
“But I think we have to work now to have Messi end his career back wearing the shirt of Barcelona being applauded on every field that he plays. We will do our best to give him the ending he deserves.”