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Lionel Messi is worried Manchester United target Samuel Umtiti will quit Barcelona in the summer, it has been claimed.
Central defender Umtiti is in talks with Barcelona chiefs over a new contract but they are unwilling to meet his £5.3million (€6m) demands, according to Spanish publication Don Balon.
The 24-year-old is currently attracting plenty of interest due to a £53million (€60m) release clause in his current deal.
And Don Balon claim United boss Jose Mourinho is willing to meet the figure to trigger the clause.
Barcelona superstar Messi has reportedly caught wind of Mourinho’s plot to bring Umtiti to Old Trafford.
It is claimed the France international’s team-mates are fearing the worst over his future.
And, according to Don Balon, Messi has met with Barcelona’s high command to express their worries.
Barcelona pal Gerard Pique believes Umtiti will commit his future to the club.
“Umtiti is a great player and we expect him to stay at Barca for many more years and for him to enjoy his football with us,” he said last month.
Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde is also unconcerned by the speculation around Umtiti’s future.
He said: “To an extent, the buyout clause is made high so that you can’t buy the player.
“But, as time goes by, that fee doesn’t seem so high at all.
“But the player still has to want to leave.
“We’re very happy with Umtiti and I’m sure he’s going to stay here for a very long time.”
Umtiti joined Barcelona from Lyon in 2016 and has established himself as a regular in the starting XI this term.
He currently earns £2.66m (€3m) a year at the Nou Camp.