Messi wants to 'retire' at Barcelona

Lionel Messi scored twice on return from injury in his side's 4-0 win and committed his long-term future to Barcelona.

    This was Messi's first Barcelona appearance since straining a thigh muscle in November [Getty Images]
    This was Messi's first Barcelona appearance since straining a thigh muscle in November [Getty Images]

    Lionel Messi committed his long-term future to Barcelona after his brace helped his side to a 4-0 win over Getafe in their King's Cup last-16 first-leg.

    Messi, in his first game back since November last year, was given a rousing ovation by the home fans when he replaced Andres Iniesta in the 64th minute at the Nou Camp.

    Dominant Barca, who rested a number of regulars, were already two goals ahead by the time the Argentina forward entered the fray after Fabregas headed them in front in the eighth minute and added a penalty in the 63rd.

    Messi looked fit and sharp during his half-hour on the pitch and his successful return to action is good news for Barca coach Gerardo Martino with Saturday's La Liga clash at title rivals Atletico Madrid looming.

    Late goals

    "I want to retire here. While people want me, I want to spend my whole career at FC Barcelona," said Messi.

    His first goal came in the 89th minute when he collected a loose ball in the penalty area and slotted into the corner from close range.

    His second in added time was a trademark dash in from the right wing and he left the Getafe defenders floundering before lifting the ball high into the net and bringing the adoring home faithful to their feet.

    "It's clear that he (Messi) hasn't forgotten how to play football," Barca captain Carles Puyol told Antenna 3.

    "He's been training very well and as you could see those are the kind of goals the best players can produce. There's a very long way to go in the league but it's a very important game (on Saturday) against what I think is one of the best teams in the world.

    "Let's see what we can do and the important thing now is to recover well from tonight's efforts."

    SOURCE: Reuters


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