Barcelona name Lionel Messi new captain to replace Andres Iniesta

Lionel Messi

If Messi does just that he'll move ahead of Andres Iniesta, on 32, now that the midfield maestro is playing with Vissel Kobe in the Japanese League.

Messi has had the role of the second captain since 2015 and he will follow in the footsteps of club legends Carles Puyol, Xavi Hernandez and Iniesta.

Lionel Messi was named as Barcelona's captain on Friday following the departure of long-serving midfielder Andres Iniesta, while defenders Gerard Pique and Sergi Roberto were named new vice-captains in a statement by the La Liga champions.

Australian and New Zealand fire crews help tackle California wildfire
About 350 residents were under mandatory evacuation orders because of the Hat Fire, which began Thursday near a highway. The fire is burning through steep, mountainous terrain filled with dried-out shrubs that are ideal fuel for the blaze.


All four of the captains chosen came through the club's La Masia youth academy and only Pique - who had spells with United and on loan at Real Zaragoza - has played senior football away from Camp Nou.

Utility player Sergio Roberto becomes the fourth captain, taking over from Javier Mascherano, who left the club in January.

One of Messi's former teammates at Barcelona, Dani Alves, is the footballer with the most club titles in the history of football.

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Five time Ballon d'Or victor Messi returns to club football in Spain after scoring just once in Argentina's chaotic and disappointing World Cup campaign.

Messi will wear the armband for the first time when Barca face Sevilla in the Spanish Super Cup on Sunday.

French flooding: German missing after hundreds evacuated from campsites
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