Lionel Messi steps in to prevent Man Utd prising €60m Barcelona star away

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Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has reportedly demanded that the club sort out a renewal for Samuel Umtiti, and it’s easy to see why.

The 24-year-old has steadily established himself as a pivotal figure in the Barca line-up, forming an important partnership with Gerard Pique in the heart of the backline.

Although the Catalan giants did sign Yerry Mina this month to add more quality and cover in that department, there still isn’t much beyond that as Umtiti and Pique will be expected to remain as the pillars of the defence moving forward.

In turn, according to Don Balon, as re-reported by The Express, it’s claimed that Messi wants Umtiti to get a new contract, as there are two main concerns over his current situation.

It’s claimed that his current release clause stands at €60m, but not only that, Man Utd have been paired with an interest in the French international and that fee would undoubtedly be within their reach.

As a result, negotiating a new deal with a higher clause is ultimately just sensible business from a Barcelona perspective, and so whether or not the suggestion that Messi has got involved is accurate, the key factor in this story remains the same.

At 24, Umtiti has already made his mark at the Nou Camp after just one full season and he still has much more development and improvement in his game. With Pique approaching 30, perhaps the former Lyon star could even grow into the new leader at the back before too long.

Umtiti made 43 appearances in all competitions last season, and although he’s recently been sidelined with injury, he has continued that form and established himself as a regular in the line-up under Ernesto Valverde this year. Messi understandably wants that to continue for a long time to come.

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