Lionel Messi has been warned by La Liga president Javier Tebas that should he leave FC Barcelona for some other club, it will end up damaging the reputation he has built over the years. Messi almost left his boyhood club during the summer transfer window only to make a dramatic U-turn at the last moment.Also Read - Robert Lewandowski Beats Lionel Messi, Mohammed Salah to be Crowned FIFA The Best Men's Player 2021

Messi had handed in a transfer request that led to weeks of back and forth with the Barcelona board with the iconic footballer not appearing for a pre-season mandatory medical test and training sessions. Also Read - BTS V Aka Kim Taehyung Joins Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Billie Eilish To Achieve THIS Major Feat | Check Here

Messi’s father, who also acts as his agent, flew to the city to hold the crisis talks with the club. Also Read - Fede Valverde on the Break Decides Supercup Clasico for Real Madrid

With just one year left on his contract, it was reported that Barcelona claimed any potential suitor will have to pay the astronomical release clause in order to sign him. Premier League’s Manchester City were leading the race to secure his services with the likes of Juventus, Paris Sain-Germain, Manchester United also reported to be interested.

Tabas admitted La Liga has been lucky to have a footballer of his talents but advised the Argentine to carefully plan his next move.

“We’ve been lucky to enjoy him for so many years but Messi should think very carefully about what he does next,’ he was quoted as saying by news agency AFP. “If Messi left Barcelona, that reputation he has now and that has worked so well for him would be very damaged.”

“It’s true he could get a better offer financially but the reputation he has after more than 20 years, I think he has to hold onto that. It wouldn’t be a drama. Cristiano Ronaldo left, Neymar left,” he added.

Tabas said it’s not the players who alone define the competition.

“Neymar went to PSG and I haven’t seen the French league reaching a super level because of him. That’s the reality. People who think the players are the ones who define a competition are wrong and I’m glad they think that way because they won’t grow,” he said.