Real Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane has reacted to the shock news that Lionel Messi wants to leave FC Barcelona upon the expiry of his contract.
The 33-year-old has reportedly halted contract talks with the LaLiga giants after becoming disillusioned with the current ongoings at the club.
But Zidane hopes that the Blaugrana can reconcile with the record six-time Ballon d'Or winner for the sake of the status of Spanish top-flight football that already lost Los Blancos legend, Cristiano Ronaldo, in 2018.
Scroll through the gallery below to see some of Messi's remarkable records for Barcelona
"I don't know what will happen but we hope not because he is in this league and we want the best in this league," Zidane said after their 1-0 win over Getafe moved them four points clear of Barcelona in the title race.
The Frenchman, who is now closing in on his second LaLiga title went on to laud his own leader, Sergio Ramos, who scored the winning goal from the penalty spot in his 450th league appearance for the iconic club.
"Our captain is our leader on the field, but also outside," Zidane said after Ramos netted his ninth league goal of the season. "He is an unrepeatable player. He is unique and we know what he transmits to everyone else."
Los Blancos have the chance to go seven points clear of their fierce league rivals when they face Athletic Bilbao on Sunday afternoon before Barca face Villarreal at 22h00 (GMT+2).