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Lionel Messi talks Ernesto Valverde and Liverpool ahead of Copa del Rey final

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The Barcelona captain has faced the press

SD Eibar v FC Barcelona - La Liga Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

Lionel Messi faced the press along with Gerard Pique on Friday and unsurprisingly it was the Barcelona captain who fielded the majority of the questions.

The skipper spoke at length about Barcelona’s painful Champions League defeat to Liverpool, praised Ernesto Valverde and talked about the Copa del Rey final.

He was also asked about a potential Barcelona move for Antoine Griezmann but made it clear he did not want to talk about the Atletico Madrid star.

Here are the best bits:

Messi on Copa del Rey

This is a final, the chance to end the season with a title and finish the season, despite everything, in a positive fashion, with another title.

We are all aware that this is a final and if we don’t win, we will be a lot worse than we are now. We have to try and overcome what has happened and try to win.

Messi on Valverde

I think Valverde has done an impressive job all the time he’s been here. In the game against Liverpool he was hardly to blame for anything. We as the players are to blame. We played a shocking game.

Of course I would like him to carry on. Last year, we won a double, it was a little stained by the loss in Rome. This year, we can win another double and it is an even bigger stain. But if you think about it, it is only two games.

Messi on Golden Shoe

I am honestly not even thinking about the European Golden Shoe. It’s not in my head at all. What happened at Liverpool is, like I said it was a big blow and I am not thinking about personal things, just getting to this Copa final and winning another trophy.

Messi on injuries

I feel better but I have had the problem since January. I have had it under control and I feel 100% now.

Messi on Liverpool

After they scored the second goal we didn’t compete. You can make mistakes in any game but what we cannot have is a situation where we didn’t compete.

After everything that has happened this year, being so close to a Champions League final. We were all thinking about the Champions League, after what happened and how it happened. But securing a double would be so important for the club.

Messi on leaving Barcelona

I still want to be here. I have also had disappointments with the Argentina team. I keep trying, and this does not change anything.”