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Dublin: 7 °C Wednesday 3 September, 2014

Iniesta plays down rumoured Messi row with Barca chiefs

The Argentine No 10 is no longer the highest-paid star a the Camp Nou since Neymar’s arrival.

Image: : Manu Fernandez/AP/Press Association Images

BARCELONA MIDFIELDER Andres Iniesta has played down a recent disagreement between Lionel Messi and club vice-president Javier Faus.

The war of words has been played out in the Spanish media, with Messi’s alleged request for a new contract the topic of conversation.

The Argentine — currently sidelined with a hamstring injury — signed a new deal in February, but is reportedly not the highest earner at the club following the signing of Neymar in the close-season.

But, with Messi having rejected claims he is seeking improved terms, Iniesta insists many of the comments were said in the heat of the moment.

“Sometimes things are said without thinking or without meaning to cause hurt,” he told Spanish television programme Jugones, calling Messi a “fundamental” player for the club.

He also backed Messi to add yet another Ballon d’Or to his collection, claiming the entire squad at Camp Nou would feel “part” of the achievement. Iniesta has recently put pen to paper on a deal to keep him at Barcelona until 2018, and the Spain international revealed his intention to end his career with the club.

“I went to the signing with my parents and my daughter,” he added. “I thought about a lot and I was the proudest person in the world. My dream is to be able to end my career at Barca.”

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