Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu has assured fans that talisman Lionel Messi could remain at the Nou Camp for the foreseeable future.
The Argentine superstar has been a huge player for the Catalans outfit, but with him being on the wrong side of 30, there are fears that his days at the Nou Camp could be drifting towards the end.
Those concerns are not helped with it becoming known that Messi is free to leave Barcelona for nothing at the end of the season, even though he is contracted to the club until the conclusion of the following term.
There is no doubt that the Catalans have begun looking at the era beyond the diminutive star, with some huge name signings coming in over recent windows, but their president believes it will be a while until they have to do without him.
“Surely it will be the wish of all parties, if he (Lionel Messi) feels strong and ambitious, to extend this contract indefinitely,” Sky Sports quote him as saying.
“Ultimately it is he who must decide. He has earned the right to decide when he will stop playing football. But like he said a few weeks ago, he wants to finish his playing career at Barcelona.
“Over the next two or three seasons our leader will continue to be Leo Messi. There’s no doubt that he is still young, still strong. He is still ambitious.
“So Leo Messi will still play with us for the next two, three, four or five years. I have no doubts about that.”
Barcelona look set to remain dominant domestically this season, but on the European stage their star looks to be waning, which would be a concern for the La Liga outfit.
When the Champions League returns after the international break, all eyes will be on Messi to see if he can rediscover the form of the Catalans side in the elite competition, and prove they remain one of the best teams on the continent.