By Pete Jenson for MailOnline
Published: 14:04 BST, 4 September 2020 | Updated: 14:46 BST, 4 September 2020
Lionel Messi has refused to admit defeat in his attempt to move from Barcelona to Manchester City this summer, reiterating his claim that he does NOT have a €700million release clause.
Messi's father Jorge issued a statement on Friday that appears to quote directly from his contract, stating: 'The release clause will not apply when the unilateral resolution of the contract comes into effect after the end of the 2019-20 season.'
The statement also slammed La Liga for wading in on the debate last week and claiming Barcelona were right to demand €700m from anyone who wanted to sign their captain.
Lionel Messi is not giving up on a Barca exit after his father released a statement on his future
Jorge Messi refuted claims from Barca that his son has a 700m euro release clause in his deal
He also slammed LaLiga for getting involved in the saga and insisting a fee must be paid
'We don't know what contract they have analysed,' it said, also condemning LaLiga's 'obvious lack of impartiality' in the matter.
The statement from Messi's father appears to suggest that Messi has given up on the idea that he can leave the club for free. But he is entrenched in his belief that there is no release clause.
That changes things drastically for Manchester City. Messi could now tear up his contract and let a tribunal decide his transfer fee.
Or Barcelona could accept that Messi has the stomach for a legal battle they would not benefit from, and sit down with Manchester City to negotiate Messi's transfer.
Messi could also still say he will stay at Barcelona but having won - as he sees it - the moral argument that he was