AP Interview: Barca president preparing for post-Messi era

In this Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, photo, President of FC Barcelona Josep Bartomeu pauses during and interview with the Associated Press at the Camp Nou st...
Barcelona's Lionel Messi reacts after missing a chance to score during a Champions League group F soccer match between Barcelona and Slavia Praha at C...
In this Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, photo, President of FC Barcelona Josep Bartomeu speaks during and interview with the Associated Press at the Camp Nou st...
In this Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, photo, President of FC Barcelona Josep Bartomeu smiles during and interview with the Associated Press at the Camp Nou st...

In this Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, photo, President of FC Barcelona Josep Bartomeu pauses during and interview with the Associated Press at the Camp Nou st...

Barcelona's Lionel Messi reacts after missing a chance to score during a Champions League group F soccer match between Barcelona and Slavia Praha at C...

In this Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, photo, President of FC Barcelona Josep Bartomeu speaks during and interview with the Associated Press at the Camp Nou st...

In this Friday, Nov. 8, 2019, photo, President of FC Barcelona Josep Bartomeu smiles during and interview with the Associated Press at the Camp Nou st...

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Lionel Messi is still going strong but Barcelona's club president has already started to look ahead to that unwanted day when the club's all-time great steps off Camp Nou's field for the very last time.

Josep Bartomeu tells The Associated Press that "we are preparing this post-Messi era."

Like all Barcelona fans, Bartomeu shares the same concerns over how the Catalan club will cope when the 32-year-old Messi starts to slow down. Bartomeu said that goal No. 1 for the club's transition plan is to ensure that Messi retires in a Barca shirt.

Bartomeu says "I have no doubts that after Messi finishes his career as footballer he will remain linked to this club for the rest of his life."

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