Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi signs his new contract at Nou Camp on Thursday.Photo: AFP
Lionel Messi has signed a new contract that will tie him to Barcelona until 2018, the club announced on Thursday.
Barca had already signalled Messi's intent to sign a new deal, along with teammates Carles Puyol and Xavi Hernandez, back in December and the four-time World Player of the Year has now put pen to paper.
"After Puyol and Xavi, this afternoon it has been Leo Messi's turn. The Argentinean star, accompanied by his father, has signed an extension to his contract with the club until June 30, 2018," said a statement on the club's website.
"The contract was signed in the Barcelona offices with president Sandro Rosell, vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu and sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta all present."
The contract retains the same 250 million euros (335 million dollars) buy-out clause as his previous deal and Messi will reportedly earn a net salary of 11 million euros (14.75 million dollars).
It is the sixth time in eight seasons that the Argentine has negotiated a new deal with Barca with the Spanish league leaders understandably keen to tie their talismanic forward down to a long-term deal.