Barca secures futures of Messi, Xavi and Puyol



REUTERS

Published — Wednesday 19 December 2012

Last update 18 December 2012 10:33 pm

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

MADRID: Barcelona secured the futures of leading players Lionel Messi, Xavi and Carles Puyol with renewed contracts yesterday.
World Player of the Year Messi’s deal has been extended by two years to June 30, 2018, which ties him until he is 31, the La Liga leaders said in a statement.
The 34-year-old Puyol, the club’s captain, has agreed a three-year extension to June 30, 2016, which would effectively see the Spanish international through to the end of his playing career at 38.
Xavi’s existing deal ran until June 2016 depending on appearances but the 32-year-old midfielder’s new contract would now end then regardless of the number of times he played, Barca added.
The new contracts will be signed in the coming weeks.
“It is with great satisfaction that the board are able to bring continuity to this successful project with the renewed deals for Xavi, Puyol and Messi,” Barcelona director Toni Freixa told a news conference.
“Puyol, Messi and Xavi are three basic pillars. It was essential to have our principal figures tied to the club.
“The buy-out clauses remain the same until there is a financial improvement.”
Offering Messi a further two years indicates how important the Argentine is to the club and ensures they secure his services over the peak of his playing career, injury permitting.
At 25, Messi has already set a number of club scoring records and is favorite to win a fourth World Player of the Year award next month.
He has been the top scorer in the world’s highest-profile club competition, the Champions League, for four years in a row, and hit the headlines recently as he racked up his 90th goal in 2012 for club and country.
Barca built their team around the fleet-footed forward over four trophy-filled seasons under coach Pep Guardiola until he stepped aside last May, and the transition to former number two Tito Vilanova has failed to upset the ‘the flea’s’ rhythm.
Messi has already scored 25 goals in 16 La Liga games this season, the latest being a double against second-placed Atletico Madrid in a 4-1 victory on Sunday which left Barca clear at the top, and 13 points ahead of their great title rivals Real Madrid.
Puyol has been a central figure at the heart of the Barca defense for more than a decade, famous for his commitment and aggression. His return after a string of injuries has settled a backline that looked distinctly shaky earlier in the campaign.

Speaking at a news conference on Monday, Puyol said: “I want to play until I am 40. I want to continue playing...but when it doesn’t feel right I will stop whether I have a contract in place or not.”
Like Puyol and Messi, playmaker Xavi is a product of the club’s acclaimed youth academy, and has pulled the strings in midfield for more than a decade.
With Cesc Fabregas settling into the side more, and the talented Thiago Alcantara emerging, Spanish international Xavi has increased competition for his place but remains a vital part of Vilanova’s plans.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Saudi Arabia’s permanent representative to the UN Abdullah Al- Muallami unveiled a beautifully framed old kiswa (covering) of the door of the Holy Kaaba at one of the newly refurbished halls of the world body. The...
A policeman was shot dead by an unknown gunman in Qatif in the Eastern Province on Tuesday night.According to a spokesman of the Eastern Province police, the firing took place at 11:30 p.m. in a suburb called Al-Jishi.The targeted police officer was...
JEDDAH: Jeddah Show, one of the many events of Jeddah Summer Festival 36, is attracting a large number of visitors. The sound-and-light show is being run at the Jeddah International Exhibition and Convention Center.The show tells the story of the Bri...
JEDDAH: The Riyadh Traffic Department carried out extensive campaigns on the main streets, intersections and squares in the city to boost traffic safety levels and discourage bad driving.During the first 72 hours of the campaign, traffic personnel re...
RIYADH: One of two women infected with the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) died here in Riyadh, while the other patient is being treated at a hospital in Al-Kharj, some 60 km from the capital. Since June 2012, the Ministry of...
AL-AHSA: Approximately 20,000 tons of Al-Ahsa dates are planned to be marketed abroad during the new dates season.Muhammad Ismail, director general of the King Abdullah City for Dates (KACD), said: “The authorities in the city are planning to increas...
JEDDAH: Al-Bagdadiya neighborhood residents in Jeddah are living in a state of worry because of 20 abandoned houses, which serve as hideouts for criminals.Residents said some houses are on the verge of collapse and have turned into shelters for crimi...
JEDDAH: A committee consisting of representatives from the Hail governorate, municipality, health department and the Saudi Food and Drugs Administration (SFDA) has ordered the closure of a restaurant in the city’s industrial area.Twelve people suffer...
The board of the Saudia Standards, Metrology and Quality Organization has announced that mandatory application of the regulations on new tires produced or sold in the Kingdom will commence in November this year.The board explained that the technical...
JEDDAH: The number of people with mental health issues or depression is increasing in Saudi Arabia due to urbanization, marital or relationship problems, and not being able to keep up with rapid progress. A Saudi mother said that her daughter suffers...
JUBAIL: Jubail beaches are expected to receive many tourists during September as a large number of people usually head to the city once the summer gets cooler to enjoy their holiday here.As part of the beach preparations for this season, the Social S...
RIYADH: More than 50 percent of vehicle users in the Kingdom are not satisfied with the after-sales service of auto agencies in the Kingdom.In a survey conducted by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MCI) to evaluate the performance of automobile...
JEDDAH: The Appeals Court has upheld the verdict issued by a specialized penal court which sentenced Dr. Said bin Zair to four years in prison from the date of his arrest in 1428.According to the ruling, the academician is also banned from traveling...
JEDDAH: Health authorities in the Eastern Province are expected to issue a decision soon against four Saudi nurses accused of “negligence” for an incident which led to the amputation of the hand of a Saudi girl after they tried to insert a needle in...
JEDDAH: The Jeddah municipality has closed down a popular restaurant following the discovery of a rat rummaging through food items.The rat act was captured on video and posted on social media websites. It went viral, prompting the authorities to laun...

Stay Connected

Facebook