Jose Mourinho believes Lionel Messi will stay at Barcelona for the remainder of his career, drawing another line under reports linking him with a move to Chelsea.
Stamford Bridge was touted as one of several potential destinations for Messi should he decide to quit Barcelona. Cesc Fabregas had even been linked with the role of coaxing him to the club.
Messi had reportedly fallen out with Barcelona boss Luis Enrique and went as far as telling Nou Camp officials that either he or Enrique would have to go. However, the Argentinian has since committed his future to the club.
He is there to stay
Mourinho, who had claimed a move for Messi would be impossible under UEFA's Financial Fair Play regulations, believes the four-time Ballon d'Or winner will stay with the La Liga outfit for the rest of his career.
"My feeling is that a player of his dimension and significance for a club like Barca, I do not see Barcelona opening the door for Messi to go"
He told Gazzetta dello Sport: "I have the feeling that Messi will always be at Barcelona. I may be wrong and nobody knows what will happen in the future.
"My feeling is that a player of his dimension and significance for a club like Barca, I do not see Barcelona opening the door for Messi to go.
"I do not see Messi playing with another shirt which is not Barcelona’s. I may be wrong, but this is my feeling."
A deal to take Messi away from Barcelona would cost any club around £500million, with £200m making up the transfer fee and the remainder going towards his huge wage demands.
Chelsea's huge new sponsorship deal with Yokohama, believed to be worth £40 million a season, would have pushed them closer towards the money they needed, but still leaves them well short.