Lionel Messi has agreed a new contract that would keep him at Barcelona till the 2018 football season.
The Catalan giants confirmed on their official website that the Argentine would pen the deal “in the coming weeks”.
Messi’s current deal runs until June 2016 and the new agreement will keep him at the Nou Camp beyond his 31st birthday.
The forward has enjoyed an extraordinary year, even by his own remarkable standards, netting his 89th and 90th goals of 2012 last weekend.
He is also in contention to claim a fourth successive FIFA Ballon d’Or crown, being named on a three-man shortlist alongside Cristiano Ronaldo and teammate Andres Iniesta.
Barcelona also revealed that Xavi and Carles Puyol have agreed contract extensions till 2016.
Defender Puyol’s contract was due to expire at the end of the season, while midfielder Xavi’s ran out the following summer.
Their new deals are set to keep them at Barcelona for the rest of their careers and underline their commitment to the runaway Primera Division leaders under new coach Tito Vilanova.
They also reduced the chances of former boss Pep Guardiola being able to tempt them away if he returns to club management next season.
A statement on the Barcelona website read: “This news means that FC Barcelona have secured ties with three of their most important players. Over the course of the next few weeks, Carles Puyol, Xavi Hernandez and Leo Messi will all be signing their respective new contracts.”
– Nigerian Eye