​Lionel Messi has publicly reiterated that he wants to see Neymar return to Camp Nou in the future, claiming that the Paris Saint-Germain forward would help Barcelona win more silverware.

Neymar enjoyed four impressive years with Barcelona between 2013 and 2017, while forming a fearsome attacking trident with Messi and Luis Suarez. However, the Brazilian but shocked the footballing world by agreeing a world-record shattering €222m switch to Paris Saint-Germain.


​Neymar has had a mixed time in France amid injury and off-the-field issues, while his priority goals of the Champions League and Ballon d'Or have proved elusive in the two-and-a-half years since his transfer.

Rumours of discontent have persisted, while he was heavily linked with a potential return to Camp Nou last summer, with Messi said to be lobbying the Barça board to re-sign the superstar.

Speaking to ​Mundo Deportivo in a wide-ranging interview, Messi admitted that he is still keen to link up with Neymar at Barcelona again,

"I've said it many times, on a sporting level, Ney is one of the best in the world and I would love for him to return," he said.

"It is normal for people to see him [negatively] because of the way he left, it also bothered me at the time, we tried to convince him not to. But in the end we all want to win. As I said before, he is one of the best and contributed a lot to us on the pitch. But it is understandable that people think like that, since he left in a way we did not like.


"He is really looking forward to coming back, he always seemed sorry. He did a lot to try and return and that was the first step to try to come back."

Alongside Neymar, ​Barcelona have also been tipped to move for ​Inter forward Lautaro Martínez, and Messi admitted that he is a huge fan of his fellow Argentine.

"He is spectacular, he has impressive attributes, he was seen to be a great player, now he exploded and is showing it," Messi added. 

"He is very strong, he is very good in one-on-one situations, he scores a lot of goals, in the area he fights with anyone, he turns, he looks for it alone. He has a lot of quality. He's very complete."

Lautaro Martinez

It was then suggested to Messi that ​Manchester City's ​Sergio Agüero could be the answer to Barcelona's problems at striker, and the Argentine confessed that City's ​Champions League ban could encourage his friend and international compatriot to think about leaving.

Messi added: "I do not know [if Agüero would sign], but if City aren't in the Champions League, there are many players who may look for an exit, or perhaps not. The Champions League is very attractive but two years without playing in it could be bad."

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