Barcelona captain, Lionel Messi, has admitted he almost left the club in 2016, because of the scrutiny on him amid a tax row with Spanish government.
In an interview with radio station RAC1, Messi claimed he and his father were being ‘mistreated’.
The two men were found guilty of tax fraud and handed a 21-month suspended prison sentence.
However, Messi appealed the verdict in 2017 and it was eventually changed to a £223,000 fine.
Jorge’s sentence was also changed from 15 months in prison to a €180,000 fine.
“At that time, with the mess of the treasury, I wanted to leave, not for wanting to leave Barca but wanting to leave Spain.
“I felt that I was being very mistreated and I didn’t want to stay here. I never had an official offer because everyone knew my idea to stay here.
“It was very difficult for me and my family because people don’t know much about what’s going on,” Messi said.
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