LaLiga News: Alba wants to reunite with Messi, promises commitment to Barca and eyes Spain

    Jordi Alba is determined to stay at Barcelona until his contract expires in 2024 and hopes he can still reunite with Lionel Messi at the Camp Nou.

    Spain left-back Alba will focus on fulfilling his World Cup duties in the coming weeks, believing La Roja are well positioned to challenge in Qatar with the first game against Costa Rica on Wednesday.

    At the end of the latest transfer window, Alba was linked with a shock move to Italian giants Inter, but he said in an interview with Cadena Ser that “nobody told me anything” about the prospect.

    “I intend to stay until the end of my contract because I think I can help; when I don’t, I’ll be first,” said the 33-year-old, five-time La Liga winner with Barcelona.

    “I got better and the people who know understand that. A lot was heard about my decision in the club, but I decided to stay. Nobody told me anything about Inter.

    Alba said he helped financially hurt Barcelona with his contract after last year’s European Championship as the club sought to cut costs.

    “Whenever they asked me for help from the club, I helped. No one can say otherwise,” he said. “Whenever the club asked me for anything, and whatever it was, I helped. I’m from Barcelona and I can feel the colors.”

    He saw Barcelona’s top scorer and top player Messi leave to join Paris Saint-Germain after the contract offer was withdrawn and the Catalans couldn’t afford to keep him.

    Nearly 18 months later, Messi is still being linked with a return to Barcelona.

    “Of course I would like Leo Messi to return to Barça,” Alba said in a separate interview with Cope. “He is the player with whom I had the best rapport on the pitch and it was a big loss for the club.”

    Such is the intense attention to Barcelona and Real Madrid, the Spanish national team can at times feel like a poor relative. However, the success they have had from 2008 to 2012, winning two European Championships and a World Cup, has meant the group has brought the country together and Alba believes they can put on an outstanding 2022 World Cup as well.

    He said of the team’s coach, the former Barcelona boss who played for both Clasico rivals: “Luis Enrique has done very well.

    “For some time we did not live up to our expectations, and the European Championship [where Spain reached the semi-finals] was very good.

    “People are hooked again and I think they will do it again with the World Cup. I hope and want to go far in this World Cup.”

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