Barcelona legend Xavi Hernandez has claimed that Lionel Messi can continue playing his football until he is almost 40 years of age. The Lionel Messi Barcelona contract has been the talk on social media as the Argentina skipper is now entering the last 12 months on his deal at Camp Nou. However, Xavi recently revealed that the Barcelona captain could continue playing football until he is 39, the same age Xavi was when he hung up his playing boots with Al Sadd.
In a recent Instagram Live chat with former Barcelona teammate Samuel Eto'o, Xavi explained that Lionel Messi is still at the pinnacle of his game and has plenty more fruitful years to follow. Xavi told Eto'o that Lionel Messi has around five to seven years of 'good football' remaining in his tank at the club as well as international level. The Al Sadd manager stated that he expects to see Lionel Messi donning the Argentina jersey during the FIFA 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Four-time Champions League winner Xavi revealed that he had the opportunity to return at Barcelona as a coach in January but declined the offer. Xavi admitted to speaking with Eric Abidal and Oscar Grau but felt that it wasn't the right decision to return to Spain. However, the eight-time LaLiga champion explained that it would be his 'dream' to coach Barcelona one day, once he earns some more experience as a manager. Xavi was unveiled as the head coach of Qatar Stars League club Al Sadd in May 2019.
Lionel Messi has been pivotal for Barcelona in their hunt for titles over the past decade. The six-time Ballon d'Or winner continued his stellar run of form this season scoring 24 times across all competitions before the season was suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak. However, Lionel Messi is now entering the final 12 months of his contract at Camp Nou, fueling rumours of an exit after he spoke out against the club's board earlier this year.