According to France Football, Messi begged Neymar to return to Barcelona after their embarrassing 4-0 defeat by Liverpool in the Champions League semi-final last season.
As per the report, the Barcelona star texted Neymar via WhatsApp, saying: “Only together can we win the Champions League. I want you to come back. In two years, I’m leaving, and you’ll be alone, you’ll take my place.”
Barcelona director of football Eric Abidal has confirmed that bringing Neymar back to the club remains an option.
“A top player, who has a Barca philosophy and who is performing at a high level, will always be an option,” Abidal said.
“From there, at the sports level we can make decisions, but the whole financial issue, there are things that you can reach and others that you cannot.
“The future will say. If it continues at this level, because the season is very long, I will not say that it will be option No 1 but it can be a clear option.”
After a disappointing exit in the last season, Barcelona are placed in Group F along with Inter Milan and Borussia Dortmund.
Having played four games, Barcelona are on top of their group with games against Dortmund and Inter to go. They will face Dortmund at Nou Camp on Wednesday.
“This is a great opportunity for us to qualify and any of the other teams in the group would like to be in our position,” Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde said in the pre match press conference.
“The best way to win is to create chances and that your rivals don’t create any. We will try and get the result through the football we play. Against Leganes we created two goals through set pieces that we created. Our aim is always to attack,” he insisted.