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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Lionel Messi reaffirms desire to return to Newell's Old Boys before retirement

The ESPN FC crew discuss Lionel Messi returning to play for his country for the first time since international retirement.

Argentina forward Lionel Messi has reiterated his desire to play for boyhood club Newell's Old Boys before retiring from football.

Messi, 29, left the Argentine club at the age of 13 and went on to become one of the most decorated players for Barcelona, winning the Ballon d'Or five times.

Despite his success in Europe, Messi still has a soft spot for his childhood club and has spoken several times about his plans to return before calling it a day.

"I would love to [return]," Messi told Telefe's...

Newell's Old Boys hopeful of signing Lionel Messi in 2018 - president

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno explains why he believes Lionel Messi will improve on last season.

Newell's Old Boys are hopeful they can bring Lionel Messi back to the club after the 2018 World Cup in Russia, when the Barcelona forward will have just turned 31.

Messi left Newell's as a 13-year-old in 2000 to move to Spain but has often suggested he will return to Rosario at the end of his career.

The club's vice president, Cristian D'Amico, is positive it is something that will eventually happen and is excited about the effect it would have on the Argentine side.

"I am convinced, like many of...

Lionel Messi return from Barcelona is Newell's Old Boys president's 'dream'

Newell's Old Boys' new president Eduardo Bermudez says his dream is to tempt Lionel Messi to play for his hometown club.

Messi, 28, famously left his home city of Rosario to join Barcelona aged 13 as the Catalan club were prepared to pay for the $900-a-month hormone treatment he then needed to grow sufficiently to become a professional player.

The Argentina captain has regularly spoken about how he plans to return to his home country at some point, and has often suggested he could play for Rosario-based...

 By PA Sport

Lucas Bernardi quits as Newell's Old Boys coach after two games

Lucas Bernardi has left his role as head coach of Argentinian side Newell's Old Boys just two games into the new Primera Division season.

The former Monaco midfielder took charge of 18 matches during his eight-month tenure at Estadio Marcelo Bielsa.

Sunday's 2-0 defeat to Rosario Central, though, proved to be the 38-year-old's last and the club confirmed they are on the lookout for an interim boss.

The club's official Twitter page said: "Roberto Sensini, the director of football, will find an interim...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Barcelona star Lionel Messi could end career at River Plate - D'Onofrio

ESPN FC's Paul Mariner explains why he gives the edge to Lionel Messi over Cristiano Ronaldo in this 2015 football calendar year.

Barcelona's leading goal scorer Lionel Messi would be a likely candidate to close out his career at River Plate, club president Rodolfo D'Onofrio told Spanish daily AS.

Four-time Ballon d'Or winner Messi had a brief one-week trial with the Argentine club's youth division when he was 12 back in 2000, and D'Onofrio insists contractual issues with Messi's home club of Newell's Old Boys were the only obstacle that kept the forward from switching to the Buenos Aires giant as a youngster.

"Why couldn't...