Messi thanks departing Luis Enrique

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Lionel Messi paid homage to outgoing Barcelona boss Luis Enrique on Monday as the Catalans prepare to unveil Ernesto Valverde as their new coach.

“Wishing you the best of luck in the next stage of your life Luis Enrique,” Messi posted on his official Facebook page along side a picture of the two hugging after Saturday’s Copa del Rey final.

“Thank you for everything in the last few years.”

A brilliant performance from Messi inspired Barca to lift a ninth trophy of Enrique’s three-year reign with a 3-1 win over Alaves on Saturday.

However, the two didn’t always see eye-to-eye as Messi missed an open training session in January 2015 in protest at being left on the bench by Enrique for a 1-0 defeat at Real Sociedad.

Barca have called a press conference with club president Josep Maria Bartomeu for 1900 local time (1700GMT) on Monday evening when former Athletic Bilbao coach Valverde is expected to be confirmed as Enrique’s successor.

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