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Barcelona icons will sign new deals confirms club chief, two favourites emerge as Luis Enrique successor

Barcelona sporting director Robert Fernandez has insisted that both Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta will sign new contract extensions.

The two club legends will both see their current agreements expire next summer, and there has been plenty of speculation over their futures with doubts emerging over whether or not they will stay at the Nou Camp.

However, Fernandez is confident new deals will be agreed upon with both players and isn’t concerned by media reports suggesting that the club are struggling financially to meet their demands or simply have other plans moving forward.

“[Messi] will renew, as I’ve always said,” Fernandez told Cadena Ser, as quoted by Sky Sports. “He is happy in Barcelona, he feels comfortable in the team and the environment is perfect.

“I don’t have any doubt [that he’ll sign a new deal]. Looking into his eyes I see that he is happy at Barcelona. I don’t want to speak too much, though, as I know that there are many repercussions with this topic.

“[Iniesta] will also renew and he’ll do it in his own time. I have no doubt that he’ll renew and neither does he.”

Meanwhile, he also went on to discuss the search for a replacement for coach Luis Enrique who will step down from his position at the end of this season.

Unsurprisingly, many names have been linked with the role, and while Fernandez dismissed reports that a deal was already in place for Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri, he addressed two other names linked with the job and didn’t do much to rule out either with assistant Juan Carlos Unzue and Athletic Bilbao coach Ernesto Valverde both in contention.

“[Unzue] is someone who knows the club really well, including the system and the players, so he is prepared.

“Valverde has had several good seasons, not just at Athletic Club.”

El Pais have seemingly confirmed that it’s likely that one of those two will be appointed this summer, as they both fit the profile desired by the Catalan giants and with their deep knowledge of how the club operates and the ideals with which the team must play, they have emerged as the favourites for the job.

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