- Zinedine Zidane advises Lionel Messi to stay back at Barcelona
- The Argentine runs out of contract this June and he has not indicated if he will extend or not
- Meanwhile both Real Madrid and Barcelona will clash at the Santiago Bernabeu this weekend
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Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has urged Lionel Messi to remain at Barcelona saying the Argentine seems better off at the club.
The Frenchman also insisted that the 33-year-old's presence alone boosts the image of the Spanish League.
Los Blancos welcome Barcelona to the Santiago Bernabeu this weekend for the second leg of their El Clasico and the hosts will be hoping they can do a double on their bitter rivals.
Recalled that Real went to the Nou Camp last October to claim victory after claiming a 3-1 triumph away from home.
However, the Catalans are second on the table with two points better than their opponent going into the game and this game could decide who wins the title eventually.
Stats according to ESPN reveals that Messi has not found the back of the net in the last seven Clasicos - with his last goal in the crunchy affair coming in May 2018.
While addressing the media ahead of the match, Zidane said after he was asked if this could be Messi's last Clasico:
"I hope he stays in Barcelona. He's fine there, and it's good for the Spanish league too. We know the player Messi is, that won't change, even if he doesn't score.
"But we play against Barcelona. It's Madrid-Barcelona. They're all really good. We'll try to overcome their strengths and we'll try to play a good game with the ball."
Madrid go into the match in arguably their best form of the season having beaten Liverpool 3-1 in their Champions League quarterfinal first leg in midweek and have gone nine games unbeaten in La Liga.
Barca's unbeaten league run is even longer, stretching 19 games back to December, but Zidane denied that losing Saturday's Clasico would see either side knocked out of the title race.
"Atletico have an advantage, they're first. "Whatever happens, right until the end, we'll all have to play for the league. Until the end, we won't know. I don't know how many points are left, but it's a lot. Tomorrow they're three points, the same as against Eibar, or Cadiz, or the rest."
Manchester City and Paris Saint Germain are two top clubs hoping to lure Messi to their outfits when his contract with Barca expires in two months time.
Legit.ng earlier reported that Real Madrid might be planning to include Vinicius Jr in a swap deal to land Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe.
The Frenchman's future at the Parc Des Princes remains uncertain following the forward's refusal to pen a new deal just yet.
As it stands, the World Cup winner's current deal with the Ligue 1 defending champions expires in June 2022 which means that teams can start talking to him from next January.
Source: Sports Brief News