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Martin Braithwaite denies asking for Lionel Messi’s No. 10 Barcelona jersey

Martin Brwaithwaite, Lionel Messi

Barcelona forward Martin Braithwaite denied a previous rumor noting he had asked the club for Lionel Messi’s No. 10 jersey on the heels of his exit.

According to Spanish outlet Cadena SER, the Danish international denied asking the club for the talisman’s number, claiming it would be “so disrespectful” to Lionel Messi and the club.

Translation via Barca Centre:

“What do people think themselves? Of course I didn’t go to the club and ask for Messi’s number,” said Braithwaite. “It would be so disrespectful. I really feel that the people who come up with these kinds of stories lack respect for a lot of people.”

“A lot of things are being written about Messi and I do not know what is happening. I can only say that he is a great player and person to be teammates with.”

“It goes without saying what he can do as a football player when he shows it every weekend. He is one of the best players ever and, of course, it will be a loss for the club if he leaves.”

Martin Braithwaite himself has been amid transfer rumors, considering he wasn’t among the seven “untouchables” that president Josep Maria Bartomeu named weeks ago.

“There are, of course, a lot of rumors. Our whole team has been linked away, so it’s only natural that I, too, have been linked,” said Braithwaite. “This is how it is to play at Barcelona when you do not achieve the club’s goal.

“I have a contract for four more years with Barcelona. I’m having a great time at the club and they’re happy with me, it seems, so I have a really good sense of where I am.”

Lionel Messi has been in the midst of a back-and-forth with Barcelona amid rumors of his exit from the club. Braithwaite has been caught in the middle of it, as the likes of Ivan Rakitic and others make their way out in the following weeks.