Lionel Messi says there was a ‘brutal drama’ within his family when he told them that he wanted to leave Barcelona.

The 33-year old handed in a transfer request last week, a development that brought shock to the club hierarchy and his wife and kids.

The player had grown frustrated with how the chiefs were doing business at Nou Camp and wanted to leave on a free transfer, basing on a clause in his contract.

Barca rejected that request and declared that the player can only leave after a €700m ($833m) fee has been paid by the interested team.

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And along with his family’s unwillingness to change location, this thwarted his ambition to accept a new challenge in his career.

He was forced to reconsider his decision and remain in Catalonia.

In an interview with, Messi revealed: “When I communicated my wish to leave to my wife and children, it was a brutal drama.

“The whole family began crying, my children did not want to leave Barcelona, nor did they want to change schools.

“But I looked further afield, and I want to compete at the highest level, win titles, compete in the Champions League. You can win or lose in it, because it is very difficult, but you have to compete.

“At least compete for it and let us not fall apart in Rome, Liverpool, Lisbon. All that led me to think about that decision that I wanted to carry out.”