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Cesc Fabregas hopes Lionel Messi will remain at Barcelona for “many more years” as negotiations over a new deal remain ongoing.

The Argentine goalscoring legend was heavily linked with an exit last summer, amid suggestions Manchester City could launch an offer.

He ultimately extended his deal at the Nou Camp, but 12 months on, he is back in the same position with intense speculation regarding his future.

Messi is set to become a free agent at the end of the month and despite suggestions that negotiations are going well, nothing has yet been agreed.

Speaking recently, Barca president Joan Laporta offered an update on proceedings, claiming the hold up had nothing to do with the financial demands of the player.

Lionel Messi and Barca president Joan Laporta remain in talks over a new deal
(Image: REUTERS)

“Leo surely deserves more and could make more elsewhere, but his desire is to make Barça great,” Laporta explained last month.

“For Leo, it is not about money, it is about the team and its chances of winning. Leo, above all, wants to feel comfortable, to feel appreciated. And then to win.”

He added that he was “moderately optimistic” that he and Messi could reach a deal that “is within the possibilities of the club and acceptable for the player”.

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There have been rumours that the Blaugrana could look to spread out his salary over a longer period in order to ease the financial burden, but regardless his ex-teammate Fabregas is desperate for talks to reach a positive conclusion.

"I don’t know what Leo will do but I hope he stays at the club," Fabregas told Goal. "It is a very personal decision and let’s see how he feels and we will see what happens.

Cesc Fabregas is close friends with Messi and he hopes that he remains at Barcelona

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“I would like to watch him play his football at Barca for many more years and be successful because he deserves it for what he has done at the club.

"I am very happy that Joan Laporta is the president. He is someone with a lot of personality.

“He is calm, he knows what he is doing and he has experience. I am very positive that he will bring the club back to where it belongs."

While Fabregas’ hopes come from a fan’s point of view, Sergio Aguero has admitted he’s desperate for his compatriot to stay after he made the move to join him after leaving Manchester City.

“Let’s hope we can play together, of course,” Aguero said after being presented as a Barcelona player.

Sergio Aguero is desperate to link up with Messi after confirming his move to Barcelona
(Image: REUTERS)

“As president [Joan] Laporta said, we’ve been negotiating for a long time and whatever happens with Leo will be his decision along with the club.

“Obviously, it would be a pleasure and it would make me very proud to play together. I’ve played with him in the [Argentina] national team since we were kids, I know him quite well and I hope we can play together here.

“I think we will, but let’s hope we can do the best for the club.”